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Publisher's Summary

Hamlet. Claudius. The Beginning. The Truth.

How did Claudius become the man he is in Shakespeare's Hamlet? What were the real reasons behind the murder of his brother? How does he really feel about his nephew? These questions will be answered in this drama spiced with ghosts, pirates, magic and political skulduggery.

Set in an alternative Europe in the 1930-'50s, Elsinore is a prequel to Shakespeare's Hamlet. This compelling drama imagines the turbulence of the Danish court in a world where Denmark is a powerful, militarised country with a small empire around the Baltic that it is fighting hard to maintain. There is more than a hint of totalitarianism in the air.

In this uneasy setting, Elsinore delves into the troubled, not to say murderous relationship between King Hamlet and his brother, Claudius: one of the most interesting characters in the Shakespearean canon. Realism meets with moments of otherworldliness as the story unravels, taking in pirates and magic, rebellion and betrayal.

A dark, exciting drama that touches on the events and people in Shakespeare's play and brings us to the moment where Hamlet begins.

From the extraordinary imagination of Sebastian Baczkiewicz, writer of the successful Pilgrim series.

Directed by Marc Beeby and Sasha Yevtushenko.

Cast:

Claudius - John Light

Hamlet - John Heffernan

Dauphin - Ed Gaughan

Captain True - Chetna Pandya

Polonius - Clive Hayward

Gertrude - Lyndsey Marshal

Anders/Dr Swiss/Schroeder - Neil McCaul

Olsson - Rupert Holliday-Evans

Yorick/Guard/Defence/Captain - Tayla Kovacevic-Ebong

Katya - Isabella Inchbald

Beatrix - Abbie Andrews

Archimedes/Prosecutor - David Reakes

Horatio/ Schroeder/Judge - Philip Bretherton

Laszlo/Voice/Ulrik Krabbe - Adam Fitzgerald

Uncle - Ben Crowe

Helena - Clare Corbett

Helgeland - Sudha Bhuchar

Catalina - Laura Christy

Kabanova - Jessica Turner

Lindstrom - Pip Torrens

Fortinbras/Marcellus - Will Kirk

Martin - Ikky Elyas 

Lieutenant/Horatio - Greg Jones

©2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd (P)2021 BBC Studios Distribution Ltd

What listeners say about Elsinore: The Complete Series 1 and 2

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  • B.W.
  • 04-02-22

Clever

Sort of obvious how it's going to end as this is the backstory to Hamlet but in a more modern setting. Lots of 20th and 21st century references some of which are chillingly relevant to current events. My only quibble is that I found the ending a little rushed but nevertheless overall a highly enjoyable production.