A Celebration of Shakespeare

To celebrate the 450th anniversary of the birth of William Shakespeare this slideshow presents a selection of portraits of actors in roles from Shakespeare’s plays, taken from the Photographs Collection.

Sir Henry Irving (1838-1905) as Shylock in 'The Merchant of Venice’ by Edward Lyddell Sawyer, 1879, Ax7706 Ellen Terry (1847-1928) as Imogen in 'Cymbeline' by William Henry Grove , 1896,  Ax131322 Cavendish Morton (1874-1939) as King Lear by Cavendish Morton, 1900s, x128825 Lily Brayton (1876-1953) as Katherine in 'The Taming of the Shrew' by Rita Martin, 1904, x131450 Christine Silver (Mrs Roland Sturgis) as Titania in 'A Midsummer Night's Dream' by Bassano Ltd, 1913, x102649 Peggy Ashcroft (1907-1991) as Juliet in 'Romeo and Juliet' by Howard Coster, 1935, x10330 Sir Michael Redgrave (1908-1985) as Orlando in 'As You Like It' by Angus McBean, 1936, x45112 Laurence Olivier (1907-1989) as Hamlet and Jean Simmons (1929-2010) as Ophelia in 'Hamlet' by unknown photographer, 1948, x137987 Claire Bloom (b.1931) as Lady Anne in 'Richard III' by P.A. Reuter Photos Ltd, February 1955, x184245 Ben Whishaw (b.1980) as Hamlet by Derry Moore, 12th Earl of Drogheda, 2004, x126968