Join us for events and activities celebrating Shakespeare’s work. In 2016 we're marking the 400th anniversary of his death.

Steven Berkoff by Hugo Glendinning

Steven Berkoff: Shakespeare’s Villains

Steven Berkoff’s one-man show explores and analyses Shakespeare’s most villainous characters through the famous words of the Bard. Athens: 15 February 2017

Alas, poor Yorick by Zoya Ignatova

About Shakespeare Lives

Find out more about Shakespeare Lives in 2016 and watch our short animation (2.36 mins).

Still from Laurence Olivier’s ‘Henry V’ (1944)

Shakespeare Lives at the Thessaloniki Concert Hall

Join us at a series of film screenings we are organising in Thessaloniki that will bring the works of Shakespeare to life on the big screen: 16 November 2016–8 February 2017.


Discussion on Shakespeare’s Sonnets

Prominent contemporary UK poets will discuss the nature of Shakespeare’s sonnets, their resonance in Shakespeare’s own plays, and in today’s writing and thinking. Athens: 14 December 2016

Stathis Livathinos, Anthony Anaxagorou

Walking Cities: Athens

Walking Cities is a British Council programme that pairs contemporary UK writers with writers and theatre experts from other countries.

#ShakespeareNoFilter is the retelling of Shakespeare’s plays on Instagram by the British Council


#ShakespeareNoFilter is the retelling of Shakespeare’s plays on Instagram by the British Council. Follow us to watch the story unfold.

Romeo + Juliet x 6: Visual arts competition for children and teenagers aged 6 to 16

Romeo + Juliet x 6

We invite children and teenagers aged 6–16 to take part in a visual arts competition inspired by musical pieces and the story of Romeo and Juliet. Deadline for submissions: 23 October 2016

Mix the Play Competition

Mix the Play

We invite you to direct a scene from Shakespeare's ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’ using an interactive video platform co-created by the British Council and the Old Vic Theatre.

Still from Roman Polanski’s ‘Macbeth’ (1971)

Shakespeare in the City

Join us at a series of outdoor film screenings we're organising as part of the Athens Open Air Festival that will bring the works of Shakespeare to life. Athens: 24 June–29 August 2016

Romeo and Juliet in Aigaleo

Romeo and Juliet in Aigaleo

Join us at a series of events – including a student performance of ‘Romeo and Juliet’ and a film screening – aimed at making Shakespeare accessible to younger audiences. Athens: June 2016

David Tennant as Richard II in a Royal Shakespeare Company production

View the BBC Shakespeare Lives online festival

Did you miss our Shakespeare Day live stream in April? You can now watch recorded highlights and much more on the BBC Shakespeare Lives website until the end of September 2016.

Audience applauds actors on stage at The Globe theatre

Exploring English: free online course Opens in a new tab or window.

Learning English? Love Shakespeare? Put the two together and study with people from all over the world.

Shakespeare's Globe Theatre in London

Join us to celebrate Shakespeare Day Live on 22–23 April

Leading arts organisations across the UK will make available performances, analysis, talks and fun, all streamed on a digital pop-up channel co-curated by the BBC and the British Council.

Globe to Globe Hamlet , part of our Shakespeare Lives programme

Globe to Globe Hamlet

We're delighted to announce the visit to Athens by Shakespeare’s historic Globe Theatre for two performances of ‘Hamlet’ as part of an unprecedented world tour: 27 February 2016.

Shakespeare's Henry VIII directed by Gregory Thompson

Shakespeare Lives: Lecture by director Gregory Thompson

Award-winning director Gregory Thompson will explore how Shakespeare continues to affect and speak to the hearts of audiences today. Thessaloniki: 28 February 2016 | Athens: 29 February 2016

National Theatre of Northern Greece Romeo and Juliet

Shakespeare Lives at the National Theatre of Northern Greece

As part of Shakespeare Lives, we're supporting two of this season's most compelling theatre productions: ‘Macbeth’ and ‘Romeo and Juliet on the road'. Thessaloniki: 15 January–27 March 2016

The five rap artists who performed a re-imagination of 'Twelfth Night' at The Globe's Sam Wanamaker theatre

SBTV presents Twelfth Night

Watch a modern re-imagination of ‘Twelfth Night’ by SBTV, featuring artists Eyez, Mic Righteous, Maverick Sabre, Nolay, Nego True and Harry Love. (Duration: 07:38 minutes)

Shakespeare Lives: Maxine Peake as Hamlet

Maxine Peake as Hamlet

Desire. Murder. Revenge. Maxine Peake as Hamlet will screen in 2016. Watch the trailer here.

Ophelia in a white dress, with red flowing hair submerged in water

Shakespeare Lives in photography Opens in a new tab or window.

Check out the winners of the Shakespeare Lives in Photography competition.

Hamlet (dir. Hay Plumb, UK, 1913)

Shakespeare on Film – Touring collection

Look out for Shakespeare films, old and new, screening internationally and online in 2016. Watch the trailer (1.53 mins).

A scene from A Midsummer Nights Dream

Shakespeare Lives in science Opens in a new tab or window.

Shakespeare Lives in Science; poisons, potions and drugs. Do Shakespearean concoctions really work?