David Yip played the roles of Gloucester and Albany in David Tse’s King Lear in 2006.
The following is from a Q&A session during the King Lear UK tour.
1. Can you tell us a little bit about the production and your role within it?
I am playing Gloucester as well as Albany. Because our production is in two
languages this is a huge challenge.
2. Can you tell us a bit about the preparations you have been making for your role in this production?
Because half of the cast speak their lines in Chinese, you have to know the
play a lot better because you can’t rely on a pick up line. I’m enjoying the
challenge of working with the verse in both languages. As far as the
characters are concerned they show very well the Chinese cultural context.
3. You are well known to UK audiences for your TV work – how does being on stage differ from TV. Which do you prefer and why?
Stage work is much more for actors. As an actor you have more input and
control over the performance. I very much enjoy the rehearsal process
involved in Theatre. Both require different specialities and disciplines.
Theatre is an actor’s forum. It’s hard to compare because they are very
different. I enjoy both separately.
4. This production of King Lear is quite radical and opens first in
Shanghai. What resonance do you think Shakespeare’s play has with a
contemporary and/or a Chinese audience?
The themes of family and materialism are universal but because of China’s
rising wealth, economy and better quality of living, it all affects the
family structures. This has happened in the East and the West. This
production works well in the context of how China is developing at the
5. How does it feel to be bringing the performance to Shakespeare’s home town?
It’s a fantastic opportunity for the Chinese cast and great to be a part of
the complete works festival. I feel it is an honour
6. Finally, if you were to summarise, what does Shakespeare mean to you?