The RSC has twice now constructed its 'Roundyard', a replica of the Courtyard Theatre in Stratford-upon-Avon which installs a specially-built thrust stage into the Camden venue with a 750-seat auditorium wrapped around it.
The current RSC season, which commences with Romeo and Juliet tonight (2 December, previews from 30 November), has the highest box office advance ever taken for an event at the Roundhouse. The company's Histories season, which played at the venue in spring 2008 attracted 99% attendance across the run.
The RSC's announcement also reaffirms the company's commitment to present work at other London venues, saying they are in discussions with Delfont Mackintosh Theatres about presenting RSC productions in 2011 and onwards. Today's statement also makes reference to producer and theatre owner Cameron Mackintosh, saying that they "continue to benefit from the success of Les Miserables”, which they originally co-produced with him 25 years ago.
The London openings schedule for the six full-scale productions is: Romeo and Juliet on 2 December (previews from 30 November); Antony and Cleopatra on 10 December (previews from 8 December); The Winter's Tale on 16 December (previews from 14 December); Julius Caesar on 10 January (previews from 6 January); As You Like It on 17 January (previews from 13 January); and King Lear on 25 January (previews from 21 January).
The ten week season will be performed by one company of 44 actors playing 228 roles between them. The productions have been developed throughout their time in the repertoire and are revised and re-rehearsed with each revival in Stratford, Newcastle, London and finally for next year's residency in New York.