ITA Live Encore: Kings of War


ITA Live Encore: Kings of War



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ITA Live Encore: Kings of War
ITA Ensemble / Ivo van Hove

In Kings of War Ivo van Hove merges William Shakespeare's plays Henry V, Henry VI and Richard III into one explosive performance about leadership. For his performance of Richard III Hans Kesting received the Louis d'Or in 2016.

Run time 270 minutes, incl. intermission
Genre Theater
Language Dutch
Subtitles English
Stream 3, 4, 5 January 2024


This stream can be viewed on the following days and times:
Wednesday January 3, 2024 at 2:00 PM CET
Thursday January 4, 2024 at 2:00 PM CET
Friday January 5, 2024 at 7:30 PM CET

Unfortunately, it is not possible to watch the stream at another time.

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Kings of War

In Kings of War, director Ivo van Hove focuses on political leadership. The original texts were retranslated by Rob Klinkenberg and then thoroughly adapted: the Hundred Years' War between England and France, and the Rose Wars between the houses of Lancaster and York for the English throne, which are emphatically present as a historical context in the original pieces, were referred to the background in the adaptation in order to accommodate a varied portrait of successive kings.
As leaders in times of political instability and war, they show remarkable affinities with world leaders today. Kings of War is not a historical reconstruction, but a performance about power, ambition, leadership and responsibility; a performance in which leaders are confronted with the ultimate decision about the life and death of thousands of citizens and in which they rule from a sense of empathy and justice or are led by an unbridled lust for power.


The Guardian

'Epic reimagining of Henry V, Henry VI and Richard III makes for an explosive examination of political leadership and present-day power'

New York Times

'In this cold-eyed, hot-blooded work, political cynicism moves with the heady rush of sexual passion. Settle in for a long session of shivers, gasps and, despite yourself, satisfied smiles. Kings of War takes the home-viewing pleasures associated with serial television portraits of cutthroat schemers, like those in House of Cards and The Sopranos, and magnifies them to the proportions of grand opera'

The New Yorker

‘the first great theatrical work of the Trump era’

What's On

‘brilliance and beauty’


Read more about the production's author, direction, music, scenography and costumes in our digital brochure.

Ivo van Hove
Ivo van Hove

Ivo van Hove was Artistic Director of Internationaal Theater Amsterdam from 2001 to 2023. As stage director, he signed on for numerous ground-breaking and highly acclaimed productions such as The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand) and A Little Life (Hanya Yanagihara), as well as the two Shakespeare marathons Roman Tragedies and Kings of War, with which the ensemble toured around the world. After twenty-two years, Van Hove decided to leave ITA and concentrate on his international directing work. He will also head the Ruhrtriennale as Artistic Director from 2024 to 2026.

In the 24/25 season, his productions of Who Killed My Father (Édouard Louis) and Angels in America (Tony Kushner) will be revived.

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by William Shakespeare
direction Ivo van Hove
translation Rob Klinkenberg
adaptation Bart Van den Eynde, Peter Van Kraaij
dramaturgy Peter Van Kraaij
scenography and light Jan Versweyveld
composition Eric Sleichim
costumes An D'Huys
video design Tal Yarden

private producers Harry en Marijke van den Bergh

co-commissioners barbican (london), théâtre national de chaillot (paris), wiener festwochen
co-production bl!ndman, holland festival, muziektheater transparent
supported by rabobank amsterdam


cast Ramsey Nasr, Eelco Smits, Hans Kesting, Hugo Koolschijn, Aus Greidanus jr., Alwin Pulinckx, Bart Sleegers, Chris Nietvelt, Gijs Scholten van Aschat, Harm Duco Schut, Ilke Paddenburg, Celia Nufaar, Jip van den Dool, Janni Goslinga
musicians  steve dugardin (contratenor), bl!ndman [brass]: charlotte van passen, daniel quiles cascant, koen kaptijn, viktor belmonte albert, adam crighton
assistant director Olivier diepenhorst, Nina de la Parra
assistant dramaturgy Thomas Lamers
assistant scenography Pascal leboucq, Bart Van Merode
assistant composition Finn Kruyning
assistant video Rodrik Biersteker
head of technical department Reyer Meeter
production leader Michiel van Schijndel, Kiki Meijerhoven
technical staff Stijn van der Leeuw (first stage manager), Yannick Bruine de Bruin, Kevin Cuyvers, Zinzi Kemper, David Logger, Nelis Meijer, Stephan Pot, Pieter Roodbeen, Dennis van Scheppingen, Michel Smouter, Erwin Sterk, Mark Thewessen, Jip van ’t Veer
costume department Farida Bouhbouh, Carlijn Veurink (dressing), Wim van vliet (head), Ton Joling (execution crown)
hair & makeup David Verswijveren
set construction Eddy van gelder, Kloosterboer decor bv, Levtec
casting advice Hans Kemna
photography Jan Versweyveld


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