Shakespeare on a plane! Plays performed at 37,000 ft set world record

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The Reduced Shakespeare Company will attempt to set a world record today when it performs an abridged version of the playwright's works at 37,000ft.

In celebration of the 450th anniversary of the Bard's birth, the live performance will take place in front of passengers on an easyJet flight from Gatwick Airport, West Sussex, to Verona, Italy.

The actors are hoping to set a Guinness World Record for the highest theatrical performance with the play which will last one hour, an EasyJet spokeswoman said. Source: PA.

The performance is part of a wider easyJet campaign to make April 23 National William Shakespeare Day.

Heritage and culture remain one of the key drivers of tourism to the UK, according to Visit Britain, and the airline has run a month-long campaign to promote the best Shakespearean sites to visitors, as well as staging free performances of Shakespeare's work at check-in desks.

Shakespeare portrait unveiled


The production will take place on board a special edition easyJet plane, complete with a 10ft image of the Bard on the fuselage.

Three actors from the Reduced Shakespeare Company will perform at the front of the aircraft and have been rehearsing in EasyJet's Luton training centre in preparation for the show.

Paul Moore, communications director for EasyJet, said: "William Shakespeare is Britain's most famous author so easyJet is proud to back the bid to make April 23 his national day.

Easyjet enjoys passenger increase

"To mark the 450th anniversary of the Bard's birth The Reduced Shakespeare Company will perform his complete works on board an easyJet flight to Verona for the first time.

"We hope to set a new Guinness World Record in the process for the highest ever theatrical performance, as well as providing a highly entertaining show for passengers."

The airline is asking its UK passengers to sign a petition in a bid to get April 23 officially recognised as National William Shakespeare Day.

The campaign has been backed by Stratford-upon-Avon MP Nadhim Zahawi and Bloomsbury Publishing, and needs 100,000 signatures by the end of July to take to debate in Parliament.

Mr Zahawi said: "Is it a Bard, is it a plane?

"William Shakespeare is one of Britain's greatest gifts to the world; he was not of an age, but for all time, and I have long argued this sceptred isle should celebrate April 23 as a national holiday.

"I'm delighted that EasyJet have chosen to campaign on this issue."

For more information about the campaign and to add your support, visit www.easyJet.com/ShakespeareDay or #Shakesonaplane.

Record-Breaking Bard at 37,000 Feet