In Kings of War the director Ivo van Hove combines three of Shakespeare’s history plays to form an explosive compilation on the theme of power and responsibility. 

It is the view of the director Ivo Van Hove that the way the notion of leadership is shaped is one of the major challenges of the decades to come. In Kings of War, he combines three of Shakespeare’s history plays – Henry V, Henry VI and Richard III – to form an explosive compilation on the theme of power and responsibility.
On the basis of the successive kings, Henry V, an ambitious soldier, Henry VI, a cry-baby with no backbone, and Richard III, a power-drunk intriguer, van Hove outlines the way power is linked to the character of the ruler and to the purpose for which it is employed. The intrigues between the kings and their retinues of counsellors and relatives are played out in an underground bunker and a labyrinth behind the stage that is made visible to the audience on video screens. The political games of manipulation, conspiracy and murder also reverberate in the dramatic score composed by Eric Sleichim. 


  • Composition • Eric Sleichim
  • Text • William Shakespeare
  • Direction • Ivo van Hove
  • Dramaturgy • Peter Van Kraaij
  • Scenography | Lighting design • Jan Versweyveld
  • Video • Tal Yarden
  • Costume design • An D'Huys
  • Actors • Alwin Pulinckx / Aus Greidanus jr. / Bart Slegers / Chris Nietvelt / Eelco Smits / Fred Goessens / Hans Kesting / Hélène Devos / Hugo Koolschijn / Janni Goslinga / Ramsey Nasr / Robert de Hoog / Harm Duco Schut
  • Countertenor • Steve Dugardin
  • Ensemble • BL!NDMAN [brass]
Location Dates Hour  
National Theatre & Concert Hall Tapei (Taipei)