The Play’s The Thing is a family-friendly exhibition that showcases 100 years of the Royal Shakespeare Company. The exhibition is an ideal introduction to William Shakespeare and his work.
What to see at The Play’s The Thing exhibition
The exhibition is primarily aimed at children aged seven and older, which means that it is a noisy environment with interactive exhibits and lots of buttons to push. It is not really the sort of attraction that holds much appeal to adults visiting without children but if you have kids, the exhibition is a great way to introduce them to Shakespeare and give them enough background information to appreciate Stratford’s other Shakespeare-related attractions.
The various exhibits are organised according to the genre of Shakespeare’s plays. The exhibition also includes costumes from various Shakespeare plays along with the Magic Costume Mirror interactive display where you can try on a virtual costume.
Despite its family-focused layout, the exhibition does include several important artefacts including a copy of Shakespeare’s first folio and costumes that have been worn by famous actors.
Visiting The Play’s The Thing exhibition
The Play’s The Thing exhibition is located inside the Grade II-listed Swan Wing of the Royal Shakespeare Company’s main theatre complex on the banks of the River Avon near the centre of Stratford-upon-Avon.
It is a fairly expensive attraction particularly if you’re paying for a whole family, although your entry ticket is good for 12 months and admission is free of charge if you have the Shakespeare’s England Explorer Pass.
The exhibition is wheelchair accessible with lift access to both exhibition floors. There is also a self-guided app-based tour available in British Sign Language.
There is an on-site cafe as well as a gift shop with Shakespeare-related souvenirs.
Allow at least an hour to visit The Play’s The Thing exhibition.