Sir Ian McKellen hits theatre fundraising milestone with one-man show

·2-min read

Sir Ian McKellen has reached a £5 million fundraising milestone and announced a charity livestream of his critically acclaimed one-man show.

Recorded in front of an audience at the Harold Pinter Theatre in January 2020, the production of Ian McKellen On Stage will be available on Amazon Prime Video from June 11, as part of a season of plays with the National Theatre.

Profits from the broadcast will combine with the remaining money raised by the show’s West End run to create a new fund supporting emerging producers and artists.

Sir Ian McKellen On Stage (Frederic Aranda/PA)
Sir Ian McKellen On Stage (Frederic Aranda/PA)

This will offer grants of up to £25,000 to pay actors’ wages for both new plays and revivals across UK theatres.

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Sir Ian said: “Performing Ian McKellen On Stage was a joy and I am delighted it can now be viewed on Amazon Prime Video as filmed by National Theatre Live.

“As our theatres reopen, I’m very pleased to be able to support producers and artists who have really struggled over the last year.”

The production will air on Amazon Prime Video (Frederic Aranda/PA)
The production will air on Amazon Prime Video (Frederic Aranda/PA)

Sir Ian devised the show for his 80th birthday tour, which saw him visit more than 80 regional theatres around the UK, earned him his seventh Olivier Award and raised £3 million for charity.

The show won widespread critical praise and featured a mixture of anecdotes, tributes to late acting friends and recitals of JRR Tolkien, Shakespeare and others.

Proceeds raised by an extended run at the Harold Pinter Theatre mean the total raised for the theatre industry has now hit £5 million.

Ian McKellen On Stage is directed by Sean Mathias.

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