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Casting announced for all female Hamlet at The Watermill Theatre

Casting news

THIS spring (April 17 to May 23, 2020), the acclaimed Watermill Ensemble is presenting a bold, innovative all-female production of Shakespeare’s timeless tragedy, Hamlet.

Underscored with live music, played by the cast, The Watermill’s resident company apply their collaborative style to Shakespeare’s most enduring play.

Frailty thy name is woman…

The all-female cast comprises:

Emma McDonald, whose recent Watermill Ensemble credits include Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream (UK tour, Wilton’s Music Hall, The Watermill Theatre); The Sweet Science of Bruising (Wilton’s Music Hall) and The Picture of Dorian Gray (The Watermill Theatre) as Hamlet.

Evanna Lynch, whose credits include Luna Lovegood from Harry Potter; Disco Pigs (Trafalgar Studios) and Houdini (UK tour) as Ophelia.

Leigh Quinn (Troilus and Cressida, RSC) as Polonius; Katherine Jack (An Inspector Calls, UK tour) as Claudius; Chanelle Modi (All About Eve, West End) as Gertrude; Nenda Neurer (Death of a Salesman, Young Vic/West End) as Laertes; Molly Chesworth (Call the Midwife) as Horatio; Lucy Keirl (Romeo and Juliet, The Watermill Theatre) as Guildenstern; Chioma Uma (Kiss Me, Kate, The Watermill Theatre) as Rosencrantz and Ami Okumura Jones (Eastenders, Midsomer Murders) as Ghost and Fortinbras.

Hamlet is directed by Paul Hart and Abigail Pickard Price, with set design by Katie Lias, lighting design by Tom White, sound design by Annie May Fletcher and movement direction by Chi-San Howard.

Director Paul Hart said: “Following our recent successful National Tours and run at Wilton’s Music Hall with Macbeth and A Midsummer Night’s Dream, it is a real delight to be heading back into rehearsals and diving into this astonishing play with such a phenomenal cast. It’s a bold new departure for the company and our aim is to create a production of Hamlet unlike anything seen here at The Watermill. Collaboration is at the heart of The Watermill Ensemble’s process and I’m constantly astonished at the invention of the work. We’re incredibly excited about our greatest challenge to date!”

Director Abigail Pickard Price said: “By presenting Hamlet as a woman we will tell Shakespeare’s timeless tragedy through the female gaze, fusing music and text in a manner unique to The Watermill Ensemble. Our Hamlet is a woman lost in a man’s world steeped in history and tradition, desperate to break the mould and fight the notion that frailty is personified by womanhood. I am incredibly excited to work with this fantastic all-female cast to unlock one of our world’s most known plays, in an effort to find new meaning for today’s audiences”.

For more information or to book tickets, call the box office on 01635 46044 or visit

The Watermill Theatre, Bagnor, Newbury, RG20 8AE