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Prince Albert was an early adopter of portrait photography

Martin Laroche (1814-86)

Mr Charles Kean (1811-68) as King Richard II 1857

Hand coloured photograph | 22.5 x 17.7 cm (image) | RCIN 2909983

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Hand coloured photograph of actor Charles Kean as King Richard II in a recreation of Act 4 scene 2 of the homonymous play, performed at the Princess's Theatre, Oxford Street in London. Kean wears a red tunic and a black short cape. He faces towards the camera and holds his hands together in front of his body.

In February 1857, Richard II was performed by Kean's company in St George's Hall. Kean then opened the production of Shakespeare's play in March 1857 at the Princess's Theatre in Oxford Street. Queen Victoria and her family visited the theatre to watch the production five times where it made a lasting impression on Princess Victoria, the Queen's eldest daughter. This photograph and other hand coloured photographs of the cast of the play were purchased by Prince Albert for Queen Victoria in 1857 as a Christmas present.   
  • Creator(s)

    Martin Laroche (1814-86) (photographer)

    Martin Laroche (1814-86) (colourist)

    Charles John Kean (1811-68)
  • 22.5 x 17.7 cm (image)

  • Given to Queen Victoria by Prince Albert as a Christmas gift

  • Object type(s)
      • visual works
        • photographs
    • Science, Medicine and Technology
      • Industries, Crafts and Trades
        • Toys and Decorations
          • Theatrical costumes