Subsidised companies like the National Theatre and Royal Shakespeare Company charge ‘way too much for tickets’, says actor Mark Rylance

By Nick Clark for the Independent, 9 July 2015

Mark Rylance, the actor, has criticised subsidised theatre companies including the National Theatre and the Royal Shakespeare Company for charging “way too much” for tickets.

While the National has a long track record of offering discounted seats, the Wolf Hall star said it had a duty to cut prices further in return for receiving state funding.

The multi award-winning actor said subsidies should be used to ensure plays are open to as wide an audience as possible.

“You can’t have the RSC and the National receiving millions of pounds of money without a lower price, in my feeling,” he told The Stage. “A lower price should be part of it.”

He continued: “It absolutely has to be accessible this stuff. And that should be the condition of the subsidy”. He spoke approvingly of the Globe Theatre, where groundling tickets cost £5 and there is “a diverse audience of young people and all kinds of mixed culture people in the audience”.

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