King Lear

King Lear

Jul 8-Aug 12, 2023

King Lear

Thou shouldst not have been old till thou hadst been wise.

An aging King Lear decides to divide his kingdom among his three daughters, proportionally by who professes to love him most. His plotting comes to catastrophe and sees him cast from his own kingdom. Shakespeare’s tumultuous tragedy explores speaking truth to power, the cost of grievous mistakes, and whether it’s ever too late for redemption.

Since 1958, the Colorado Shakespeare Festival has delighted audiences with professional theatre on the CU Boulder campus. Complete your Colorado summer with Shakespeare under the stars in the historic Mary Rippon Outdoor Theatre—complimentary seatbacks included.

Weather policy

Attending an outdoor show in the Boulder foothills can be unpredictable. Come prepared to enjoy the adventure by reviewing our weather policy and attire suggestions. Learn more

Performance dates and times

Saturday, July 8, 7:30 p.m. (Preview) $23-$65
Sunday, July 9, 7:30 p.m. (Opening) $29-$85
Thursday, July 13, 7:30 p.m. $25-$73
Friday, July 14, 7:30 p.m. $29-$85
Sunday, July 16, 7:30 p.m. $29-$85
Thursday, July 20, 7:30 p.m. $25-$73
Friday, July 21, 7:30 p.m. $29-$85
Wednesday, July 26, 7:30 p.m. $25-$73
Saturday, July 29, 7:30 p.m. $29-$85
Friday, Aug. 4, 7:30 p.m. $29-$85
Saturday, Aug. 5, 7:30 p.m. $29-$85
Wednesday, Aug. 9, 7:30 p.m. $25-$73
Friday, Aug. 11, 7:30 p.m. $29-$85
Saturday, Aug. 12, 7:30 p.m. $29-$85

View full CSF 2023 calendar

Buying options

Save big with season tickets! This show is available in the Full, Pick 2 or 3, Weekday Will, and Choice packages or as an add-on to other season ticket orders. Learn more

Single ticket discounts are available for preview night, groups (10+), youth (K-12), seniors (65+), students, active military and CU students and employees. Volunteer ushers get to see the show for free. Learn more

This production contains adult themes and effects, including simulated graphic violence.

Colorado Shakespeare Festival will present a woman as King Lear in 2023

But major renovations are coming that will move the 2024 outdoor season entirely indoors

John Moore, Denver Gazette

Learn more - Colorado Shakespeare Festival will present a woman as King Lear in 2023

Performance Extras

Free Event
Preshow Talks Jun 13-Aug 13, 2023

Preshow Talks

CSF offers a free preshow talk—called "Prologue"—given by…

Applied Shakespeare Weekend Comprehensive Aug 3-6, 2023

Applied Shakespeare Weekend Comprehensive

Immersive weekend comprehensive designed to provide a deep…

Free Event
Green Shows Jun 11-Aug 13, 2023

Green Shows

Delight in free outdoor entertainment before the performance—…

Free Event
Shakespeare Gift Store Jun 11-Aug 13, 2023

Shakespeare Gift Store

Bring home a lasting memory of your visit…

Free Event
Shakespeare Gardens Jun 11-Aug 13, 2023

Shakespeare Gardens

The Colorado Shakespeare Gardens (CSG) invites all who…

Free Event
Picnicking Jun 11-Aug 13, 2023


75 minutes before showtime, our grounds come alive…


Carolyn Howarthº

Read Bio for Carolyn Howarthº

Plan your visit

Most CU Presents performances take place on the beautiful University of Colorado Boulder campus. Take some time to explore our venues, find out how to get here and get more tips on what to do while you’re in town.

Plan Your Visit - Plan your visit

Accessibility Services

The University of Colorado is committed to providing equal access to individuals with disabilities. If you are planning to attend an event take some time to review our accessibility services.

Accessibility - Accessibility Services