Hamlet: Public announce full cast, Richard Easton & Lily Rabe are replaced by Sam Waterston & Lauren Ambrose

The Public Theater has announced the final casting for Hamlet, the first production of the 2008 Shakespeare in the Park summer season.

The last time Hamlet was done in the Park, Sam Waterston played 'Hamlet.' Now, 33 years later, he is returning to play 'Polonius' opposite Michael Stuhlbarg as 'Hamlet.' Following her role as 'Juliet' in 'Romeo and Juliet' last summer, Lauren Ambrose will return to the Park to play 'Ophelia.'

Richard Easton who was originally announced to play 'Polonius' and Lily Rabe who was to play 'Ophelia', have become unavailable due to scheduling conflicts.

The cast will also features Andre Braugher (Claudius), Kevin Carroll (Horatio), Margaret Colin (Gertrude), David Harbour (Laertes), Hoon Lee (Rosencrantz), Piter Marek (Bernardo / Fortinbras), Greg McFadden (Guildenstern), Julio Monge (Osric/Francisco), Paul O'Brien (Voltemand/Priest), Gilbert Owuor (Marcellus), Jay O. Sanders (Ghost/Gravedigger/Player King) and Miriam Silverman (Player Queen). The ensemble features Christopher Bonewitz, Matt Carlson, W. Tre' Davis, Stephen James King and Dana Lyn.

Hamlet: A young man haunted by his father's ghost and driven to the edge of madness in his obsession to avenge his death.

Hamlet will open at the Delacorte Theatre in CEntral Park on 17 Jun 2008, following previews from 27 May and run through to 29 Jun 2008.

The design tem comprises David Korins (sets), Ann Hould-Ward (costumes), Michael Chybowski (lighting) and Acme Sound Partners (sound).

Hamlet has not been staged at The Delacorte Theater since 1975 when Sam Waterston played the title role.

Tickets are FREE and will be available on the day of the performance (two per person) at the Delacorte Theater in Central Park beginning at 1pm, or via the virtual line at The Public Theater website (www.publictheater.org) beginning at 12 am the day of the performance.

Note: The Public Theater will not be distributing tickets downtown at 425 Lafayette Street due to ongoing construction on the exterior of the building.

Following the success of the 40th Anniversary concert celebration of Hair last September in the Park, The Public Theater will stage a full production this July as the second offering of the Shakespeare in the Park season. Directed by Diane Paulus, Hair will begin previews on 22 Jul 2008 and run through 17 Aug 2008.

Hamlet and Hair were the first two shows presented at The Public when it opened on Lafayette Street in 1967.

Sam WaterstonLauren Ambrose

Originally published on