Thursday, Nov 27, 2014
 
search SGN
SERVING SEATTLE AND THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST FOR 40 YEARS!

click to visit advertiser's website


Javascript DHTML Drop Down Menu Powered by dhtml-menu-builder.com

Last Weeks Edition
   
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website




 

 

 
 

 

 

[Valid RSS]

click to go to advertisers website
to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, January 17 2014 - Volume 42 Issue 03
Seattle Shakespeare gives Richard II an admirable production
Arts & Entertainment
ALL STORIES
  next story
Seattle Shakespeare gives Richard II an admirable production

by Miryam Gordon - SGN A&E Writer

RICHARD II
SEATTLE SHAKESPEARE COMPANY
Through February 2


Seattle Shakespeare Company is the place to see all things Shakespeare, at least over the course of several years attending. There is a virtual guarantee of seeing every Shakespeare play, including ones that many people don't do elsewhere. Such is the case with Shakespeare's Richard II, now on stage.

Richard II is one of Shakespeare's histories and one difficulty in producing it is that it's hard for current audiences to care about kings and queens of English history whose stories don't affect us much. English audiences of his time would have known the stories well, and the complicated relationships among the royalty.

The main take-away from Richard II is that he was a very poor monarch who, according to Shakespeare, was insecure about keeping his throne and launched a major war that he lost, and which led to The War of the Roses (a rivalry of royalty of York and Lancaster descent). Richard II banishes his cousin, Henry of Bolingbroke, and then confiscates Henry's inheritance after Henry's father, John of Gaunt, dies. Henry, not surprisingly, mounts an army to get his land back and decides to take the throne of England as well.

Shakespeare makes it clear that if Richard had not confiscated this land, he might have continued to rule for a long time, and Bolingbroke might never have become Henry IV. But that is not the only important aspect of this play. Richard II is believed to be one of the early plays we know that Shakespeare wrote and it is the only one written almost entirely in verse.

There are two points of view about monarchy presented for Shakespeare's audience. Richard believes he is King by divine right, guided by God and not subject to human faults. Bolingbroke contends that a King must also be wise and savvy about ruling.

The Shakes production is spare, with an almost bare set and a massive, movable throne (designed by Carol Wolfe Clay). There are also some distinct metal guide-frames above that I wish would have been actually used in some way rather than just framing the 'ceiling' of the stage. This staging makes Geoff Korf's lighting a very important element and Dominic CodyKramers' sound design sublime.

Directed by adroit Rosa Joshi, who has a deep familiarity with Shakespeare, a well-cast ensemble, all male but two women, present the play clearly. George Mount, artistic director of the company, takes on Richard and he clearly loves the language he speaks. He reasonably appears roughly 32, Richard's age, though his Queen is portrayed as a grown woman who loves him, not the real 10 year old Richard was married to. Brenda Joyner has the almost thankless task of portraying that Queen, but makes great use of her moment in the second act to shine.

The first act seems like it could have been more exciting, particularly with angry courtiers wanting to duel, and ending punished with banishment. The pacing is consistent, but a bit static. The second act is much more active, engaging and energetic.

Overall, the production is probably best for those who desire to see every one of Shakespeare's plays on stage. It's a competent production, solidly presented, though not transcendent in any particular way. Other performances of note include David Foubert as Henry Bolingbroke and Dan Kremers in a series of small but key roles.

For more information, go to www.seattleshakespeare.org or call 206-733-8222. Discuss your opinions with sgncritic@gmail.com or go to www.facebook.com/SeattleTheaterWriters.

Tell a friend:

Share on Facebook  Share on Facebook

Post to MySpace!Share on MySpace!

    Share on Delicious

Share on StumbleUpon!

Hell to pay - Jerry Springer goes to the Devil
------------------------------
2014 Academy Award Nominations
------------------------------
RuPaul's Drag Race star Manila Luzon to interview with SGN
------------------------------
Jesse's Journal: The Chozen people
------------------------------
Seattle Shakespeare gives Richard II an admirable production
------------------------------
Rigoletto wins again!
------------------------------
Katy Perry's 'Prismatic World Tour' coming to Tacoma
------------------------------
Strawberry Theatre Workshop presents The Normal Heart
------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------
Intiman Theatre's 2014 Festival
------------------------------
Lone Survivor a powerful story of sacrifice, brotherhood
------------------------------
Clancy's Ryan reinvented for a post-9/11 world
------------------------------
Latest Hercules hardly legendary
------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------
Northwest News
------------------------------
Letters
------------------------------
Oscar party set for March 2 at Purr
------------------------------
Insipid Ride Along running on empty
------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

------------------------------

click to visit advertiser's website

click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
click to visit advertiser's website
Seattle Gay Blog post your own information on
the Seattle Gay Blog
 

gay news feeds gay news readers gay rss gay
http://sgn.org/rss.xml | what is RSS? | Add to Google use Google to set up your RSS feed
SGN Calendar For Mobile Phones http://sgn.org/rssCalendarMobile.xml
SGN Calendar http://sgn.org/rssCalendar.xml

Seattle Gay News - SGN
1605 12 Ave., Ste. 31
Seattle, WA 98122

Phone 206-324-4297
Fax 206-322-7188

email: sgn2@sgn.org
website suggestions: web@sgn.org

copyright Seattle Gay News - DigitalTeamWorks 2013

USA Gay News American News American Gay News USA American Gay News United States American Lesbian News USA American Lesbian News United States USA News
Pacific Northwest News in Seattle News in Washington State News