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Dear Greg. Open letter to Greg Doran at The Royal Shakespeare Theatre

Dear Greg Doran, Open letter to Greg Doran at The Royal Shakespeare Theatre

Dear Greg. Open letter to Greg Doran at The Royal Shakespeare Theatre,the rsc,the swan,the other place shawnee, Dear Greg. Open letter to Greg Doran at The Royal Shakespeare Theatre,

I, along with so many others are sad at the consequences of Covid 19 and the changes it has wrought at The Royal Shakespeare Theatre.

While we wait for this pox to either dissipate or be tamed by a vaccine, I wonder if I might make a few suggestions that you might take into consideration ready for when a brighter day (as it must) dawns?


  • Please, no more building projects that do nothing but blatantly glorify one’s (The RSC) own presence. I refer of course to the recent (ish) refurbishment and to the totally unnecessary viewing tower. ‘Pride before a Fall’

  • May I suggest that now you have decided to close The Swan and The Other Place, you actually move what was meant to be on at these theatres to the Main House?

  • Although I am no believer in a Golden Age as far as the RSC goes, I do believe that when the Company system was different and (Buzz Goodbody’s) The Other Place was in full use highlighting important contemporary plays, what we had was the RSC at its best. Not only was it a great purveyor of Theatre it was also a fantastic training place for Actors. I worked backstage during this time and although there were of course faults with the system, theatre was everywhere, it was health-giving and appeared to me to attract a, much, much wider and varied audience which surely, in the end is what you want?

  • I would maintain that now during this crisis, is a valuable time to rethink. Of course, I accept the fact that part of that rethink does have to include a business brain but please not to such an extent that you lose your (the RSC) artistic fire and passion? I believe we look to the Arts for ‘a way out’ or as WC Fields said when referring to something else, ‘a loophole’ 

  • The RSC has become, in my opinion, lifeless, a shadow of its former self. Even I, although not a huge fan of Shakespeare, remembers, the excitement generated by Tony’s Richard III and Branagh’s Henry V. What happened?

These are dark times, and I can’t be the only one to look towards the RSC with disappointment.

Considering the creative energy I know to exist within the building, I had hoped for something new, something innovative, imaginative etc, something that took on the Virus front and Centre. Unfortunately, what with the dark stages and the deafening silence from the wings, it seemed like everyone had given up and scuttled off, soundly and roundly defeated. 

Yours The Stratfordian. x

Thanks for your point of view. Much appreciated.

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