Glenda Jackson, who won two Academy Awards before turning her attention to politics, is headed back to the stage after 25 years to tackle the title role in Shakespeare’s “King Lear.” The New York Times notes that the role is “one of the most demanding roles in theater” — an undertaking so difficult that the part has earned the nickname Mount Lear.
“It would seem especially so for Ms. Jackson, whose last performance came in 1991, in Eugene O’Neill’s ‘Mourning Becomes Electra’ at the Glasgow Citizens Theater,” The Times notes. “Her return, after such a long hiatus, is highly unusual and, at 80, she is older than all but one of Britain’s last 10 Lears in major productions.”
Jackson received four Oscar nominations for leading roles in a span of a few years in the 1970s, taking home trophies for “Women in Love” in 1971 and “A Touch of Class” in 1974 along with nominations for “Sunday Bloody Sunday” and “Hedda.”
She has been keeping busy more recently as a Labour Party politician, serving as a Member of Parliament from 1992-2015.
Jackson will tackle Lear at the historic Old Vic, the 198-year-old, 1,000-seat theater where Laurence Olivier played Othello and Judi Dench performed as Juliet.