classical music

The Food of Love

Part of Classical Season 2018/19

Hear Shakespeare’s extraordinary words brought to life with orchestral and choral music from stage and screen.

Narrated by Sir Derek Jacobi and Frances Barber, with famous excerpts from Shakespeare's plays and entertaining theatrical anecdotes, the evening features musical highlights from the glittering scores of Craig Armstrong (Romeo + Juliet), Stephen Warbeck (Shakespeare in Love), William Walton (Henry V Suite), Nigel Hess (Royal Shakespeare Company productions), Henry Purcell, Roger Quilter and Ralph Vaughan Williams.

Frances Barber is an actor for theatre, film and TV. Seasons at The RSC, The National and in London's West End have seen her play parts in Shaw, Chekov (Sonya in Uncle Vanya, for which she received her second Olivier nomination and a TMA Award for Best Actress), Tennessee Williams, Shakespeare and many contemporary playwrights. She created the leading role, Billie Trix, in the Pet Shop Boys’ musical, Closer to Heaven, for which she won the WhatsOnStage Best Actress in a Musical Award.

One of the world’s best-known actors, double Olivier Award winner Sir Derek Jacobi has played many of Shakespeare’s seminal characters on stage during his illustrious career, including Hamlet, Macbeth, Lear, Prospero and Richard III. His numerous screen appearances range from Murder on the Orient Express to the popular series Last Tango in Halifax.

Artists may be subject to change. All details correct at time of going on sale.


Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
Nigel Hess conductor
Morgan Pearse baritone
Elin Manahan Thomas soprano
The Cantus Ensemble
Sir Derek Jacobi presenter
Frances Barber presenter *
Guy Unsworth stage director


Nigel Hess: The entry to the Senate from Julius Caesar
Walton: Fanfare from Hamlet
Quilter: Evening in the forest from As You Like It
Nigel Hess: Christening & Coronation from Henry VIII; The statue from The Winter's Tale; Sigh no more from Much Ado About Nothing; Suite from The Comedy of Errors
Walton: Soliloquy from Hamlet; Suite from Henry V
Patrick Doyle: Non Nobis, Domine from Henry V
Craig Armstrong: Balcony scene from Romeo & Juliet
Nigel Hess: Evening hymn from Love's Labour's Lost
Purcell: Overture, Timon of Athens
Nigel Hess: Overture, Much Ado About Nothing
Vaughan Williams: The cloud-capp'd towers from The Tempest
Nigel Hess: Willow song from Othello; The wind and the rain from Twelfth Night
Stephen Warbeck: The end from Shakespeare in Love

Dates & times

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Royal Festival Hall


£10 - £50
Booking fee: £3.00 (Members £0.00)

Multi-buy discount

£10, £20, £30, £40, £50

Multi-buy discount
Book multiple Royal Philharmonic Orchestra events in the same transaction and receive a discount: 2 – 3 events (15% discount); 4 or more events (25% discount). Events must be in the 2018/19 season.


25% off (limited availability)
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Event information
* Please note change of artist from originally advertised.