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The Royals are central characters from the Shakespeare play.

The Royal characters are Hamlet, Ophelia, Gertrude, Claudius, Polonius and Laertes.

If you are cast as a Royal, your play experience will be somewhat different from that of the other participants. Your fate is predetermined in the Shakespeare text, and you will need to play certain scenes according to a schedule.

You will perform in one or several “cut scenes” during the larp, in front of all the other participants. Depending on the character, you might need to learn up to 500 lines of Shakespeare’s English, as well as being able to project your voice and take direction.

The Royals will be required to start preparations at least 2-3 weeks before the larp itself. You will study text and work over Skype with our Royals director Nina Runa Essendrop. You will need to arrive on location one day before the start of the larp (the extra hostel night and lunch on Friday will be included in your ticket).

In the previous runs of Inside Hamlet, Royal characters have been played by for instance professional and amateur actors, a priest, teachers of English or theatre, and Shakespeare fans. As long as you feel confident in your skills, there is no correct profile. All Royal characters are open to players of all genders.

Participant portraying Royal characters interact with the rest of the participants, and will have plenty of time to larp and immerse. They will be prepared through workshops to embody the feel and themes of the original Shakespeare play. The great amount of preparations before the larp will allow for a unique experience.

Please note Ofelia and Polonius will die before the larp has ended. The player of Polonius will be be able to return as another character. The player of Ophelia will not be recast, but can re-enter the setting as Ophelia’s ghost.

The Purpose of Royals in the larp

There are several purposes for the Royals in the larp.

  1. To represent Shakespeare’s play in the larp – not only the characters and narrative, but also the text (language and lines) and the mood/themes.

  2. To make the Hamlet characters an integrated part of the larp, for other participants to interact with and mirror.

  3. To play out scenes and soliloquies from the original play, for other participants to spectate and be influenced by.

  4. To help set the aesthetic and influence the playing style of the larp.


Why should you sign up as a Royal?

To participate as a Royal is a big undertaking but also very rewarding. You will have to prepare a lot more than you usually do for a larp. Your fate in the larp may be locked, but you will together flesh out and live through the journey. The Royals will have responsibility but also the opportunity for a unique experience.


Which Characters are considered Royals:

The Royal Family

The Royal Family consists of Hamlet, Gertrude and Claudius.

The Royal family are the rulers of Denmark. The old king Hamlet recently died and his widow Gertrude has married his brother Claudius, so that Denmark yet again has a royal couple to rule the kingdom. The late king’s son, also named Hamlet, has trouble dealing with his father’s death.

Participants portraying members of the Royal Family should expect some in-character work related to taking care of Royal business or otherwise being centers of attention during the larp.

The Polonius Family

The Polonius Family consists of Polonius, Ophelia and Laertes.

As the Lord Chamberlain of Claudius's court, both Polonius and his children Ophelia and Laertes are closely connected to the Royal Family. Ophelia and Hamlet have previously been an item, and might still be – the gossip does not entirely agree.

The Polonius family has more members in the larp than Polonius, Ophelia and Laertes. Through the wider Polonius family participants portraying members of this Royal group will become more integrated in the larp.

The experience

As Royal you will:

  • Get to play one of the main characters of the play, living through the story.

  • Get a pre-written interpretation of your character which will give a direction for your play and experience.

  • Get to memorise and play out scenes from the original play.

  • Know your purpose in each act and know where your story is headed so you can concentrate on living the emotions and situations.

  • Have a one day workshop before the other participants arrive, and several smaller Skype workshops in the weeks before.

As Royals we expect you to:

  • Attend a one-day workshop the day before the other participants arrive.

  • Attend 2-3 Skype workshops in the weeks before the larp.

  • Know your lines by heart before arriving to the workshop. You will have up to 500 lines to learn and for people not used to learning lines, you should expect to start rehearsing 2-3 weeks before the larp.

  • Be willing to play out scenes from Shakespeare’s Hamlet with the rest of the participants as spectators.

  • Be willing to fit your playing style to the style and themes of the larp and to have part of the characters journey predetermined.

The process/working methods:

  • We will help and prepare you for the experience and responsibilities of playing Royal.

  • We will work with how to stay present and immersed while performing scenes/soliloquies and how to make these situations feel more lived than acted for you and for the other participants.

  • We will work with your characters in relation to the Shakespeare text, embodying and immersing into the images and feel of the text.

  • We will work with relating your characters to the larp, the other characters and the themes of the different acts.


If you want to play Royal you can apply for it in the casting form emailed to all participants.

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