King Lear

by William Shakespeare

Directed by Michael Attenborough, award-winning actor Jonathan Pryce plays the title role in Shakespeare’s greatest tragedy.

Choose Your Format

  • £3.99
  • £8.99
  • £10.99

Nothing will come of nothing. 

Michael Attenborough brings Shakespeare's greatest tragedy to the intimacy of the Almeida stage.

When Lear asks each of his daughters to profess their love for him, he is flattered by the false hyperbole of Regan and Goneril. When his youngest daughter Cordelia confesses to love him simply as a daughter should, his pride is dented and he casts her out of his kingdom.

Too late to realise his mistake, and forced from power by his offspring, an increasingly impotent and frail Lear descends into madness.

Award-winning actor Jonathan Pryce plays the title role in a production that formed part of the World Shakespeare Festival in 2012.


Pryce gives a striking, individualistic performance. 


Attenborough’s staging has a beautiful, deceptive simplicity...Pryce on storming form. 

Independent on Sunday

Jonathan Pryce brings an impressive mix of tenderness, quivering insecurity and raw passion to his interpretation of one of Shakespeare’s most exacting roles. 

Evening Standard

Attenborough’s fine production is pacey, vital and beautifully spoken. 

Time Out

I place this Lear higher than Sir Ian McKellen’s celebrated rendition of a few years ago.  

Daily Mail

Spellbindingly illuminates Shakespeare’s great tragedy. 

Sunday Express

...Simply’s what you come to Lear to see. 

The Times


Captured at the Almeida Theatre, London, in November 2012.

Production photography © Keith Pattison.

Contains moderate violence.

Available Formats

Rent for 48 hours

Rented productions are made available in your library for 30 days with 48 hours to complete viewing from the first time you begin playback. You can watch Rentals when online directly through your browser or on your iPhone, iPad or iPod touch.


Purchased productions are yours to keep forever, and can be watched online through your browser or enjoyed on one of our supported devices. Standard Definition purchases are normal broadcast quality, meaning smaller file size and quicker downloads when compared to a HD purchase.

Buy HD

Like Standard Definition purchases, High Definition productions are yours to keep forever, and can be watched online through your browser or enjoyed on one of our supported devices. High Definition purchases are the highest quality available and perfect for customers with HD televisions, monitors or Retina Displays.

Customer Comments

No comments have been posted. Be the first!

Login to your account to post a comment.

    Related Productions and Pages

    • As You Like It

      Thea Sharrock's irresistible production of Shakespeare's romantic comedy starring Naomi Frederick and Jack Laskey.

      Read more
    • Macbeth

      David Morrissey plays the murderous king in the Liverpool Everyman staging of Shakespeare's visceral and menacing play.

      Read more
    • The Comedy of Errors

      Shakespeare's classic comedy about two sets of twins is retold with a contemporary twist by the RSC and Told by an Idiot.

      Read more
    • Much Ado About Nothing

      David Tennant and Catherine Tate star as reluctant lovers Benedick and Beatrice in Shakespeare's timeless comedy.

      Read more