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William Shakespeare had one son. He named him Hamnet. Shakespeare then left Stratford-upon-Avon to pursue his career in theatre in London, effectively abandoning his family. In 1596, he was told that the boy – then 11 years old – was seriously ill. By the time Shakespeare reached home, Hamnet had died. In 1599, Shakespeare wrote a play called Hamlet.

Hamnet is too young to understand Shakespeare. And he is one letter away from being a great man. We are too old to understand Hamnet. How close are we to greatness? We meet in the middle, in a theatre, in purgatory; youth reaching forward to a life it will never know, an audience reaching back to a life it has forgotten.

Dead Centre, the Dublin-based theatre company responsible for groundbreaking and award-winning productions Lippy and Chekhov’s First Play, recovers the little-known Hamnet from history, placing him centre stage as he pieces together a portrait of his famous father.

One of only three UK touring dates this year following an international tour, Warwick Arts Centre brings this very local story – and dazzlingly innovative production – home to Shakespeare country.

“Over the course of a beautifully spry hour you can admire the performance’s bright surface or plunge into it fathoms deep” ★★★★★ Irish Times

Supported by Culture Ireland as part of GB18: Promoting Irish Arts in Britain.


The following information is for teachers and home educators. If you are not a teacher or home educator you can book tickets for this show by clicking on the ‘Dates & Times’ tab above.

£8, plus every 16th ticket FREE for teacher

Age Guidance:
Ages 12+

Running Time:

Booking information:
To find out more or to book, call our dedicated schools booking contact Amanda in the Box Office on 024 7615 0930 or email