July 5, 2020

How many Shakespeare plays are in the UK’s Top Ten Favourite Plays?

English Touring Theatre has taken a poll of theatre goers and revealed that Alan Bennett’s internationally renowned play The History Boys has been voted the Nation’s Favourite Play.

Since September thousands of theatre fans have been voting for their favourite play. The poll – the first of its kind to ask theatre fans to vote for their favourite English language play – was commissioned by English Touring Theatre to establish what the nation most wants to see.

But how many of the Top Ten were by Mr W. Shakespeare? The answer is four, with Hamlet top in third position. Unsurprisingly there is no place for Coriolanus, but even Romeo and Juliet misses out.

Some of the favourites will be presented in 2014 to celebrate English Touring Theatre’s 21st anniversary. Musicals, adaptations and translations were not counted.

More details about the English Touring Theatre.


The nation’s favourite top ten plays are:

1. The History Boys by Alan Bennett

2. Noises Off by Michael Frayn

3. Hamlet by William Shakespeare

4. Arcadia by Tom Stoppard

5. The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde

6. Jerusalem by Jez Butterworth

7. An Inspector Calls by J B Priestley

8. Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare

9. Macbeth by William Shakespeare

10. King Lear by William Shakespeare

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