Stacy Keach Stars in Shakespeare Theatre's HENRY IV, PART 1 and HENRY IV, PART 2, Now thru 6/8
The Shakespeare Theatre Company, recipient of the 2012 Regional Theatre Tony Award, presents Shakespeare's Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2 as part of the Clarice Smith Repertory. STC Artistic Director Michael Kahn will direct both parts of this sweeping epic - one of Shakespeare's culminating achievements in the history play genre - over multiple nights. As Kahn says, describing Parts 1 and 2 as his favorite Shakespearean drama: "It brings to the stage every issue we as human beings experience." The two productions will run in the Company's Sidney Harman Hall (610 F Street NW) from today, March 25 - June 8, 2014.
Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2 show us great kings and mighty warriors, but they also vividly portray the common man and woman. Functioning as a family drama of unusual intimacy and a grand portrait of regional and political differences throughout England, the plays evoke a fully realized world. In Part 1, Shakespeare tracks the education of the young Prince Hal across three wildly different realms: the Eastcheap tavern of Sir John Falstaff, the royal court of his father King Henry IV and the battlefield of Shrewsbury on which he faces his foe and rival, the chivalrous Hotspur. These three worlds, and their representative leaders, coexist and collide in the play, to a thrilling and virtuosic effect. Part 2, less commonly performed than its more famous predecessor, reworks the same three-world structure with deepening symbolism to depict the death of an old order and the birth of a new one.
This installment of the Clarice Smith Repertory also marks the return of preeminent classical stage actor and STC Affiliated Artist Stacy Keach. Keach plays Falstaff, one of Shakespeare's most enduring and complexly human creations. Keach has an illustrious list of film and TV credits, including most recently The Bourne Legacy, 30 Rock and Nebraska. He returns to Washington for the first time since his acclaimed, Helen Hayes Award winning performance of King Lear for STC in 2009. "There are many colors to Falstaff in every scene, and I can't think of anyone better to play Falstaff than Stacy Keach" Kahn said. "Shakespeare Theatre Company owes a big debt to Stacy, as he was the first star to appear on our stage in Richard III."
Playing the stern, reserved and resolute King Henry IV to Keach's Falstaff is his longtime friend and fellow STC Affiliated Artist Edward Gero. Matthew Amendt, STC newcomer and alum of the Guthrie Theatre School will play Prince Hal, who struggles to choose between his two father figures. STC favorite Kate Skinner, last seen in 2010's production of Ben Jonson's The Alchemist, also returns for her 10th Shakespeare Theatre Company show as Mistress Quickly.
Henry IV, Parts 1 and 2 features a talented ensemble cast that includes Bev Appleton* as Justice Silence/Gower, Brad Bellamy* as Bardolph, Kelley Curran* as Lady Percy, Aaron Gaines as Edmund Mortimer/Lord Hastings/Ensemble, Chris Genebach* as Sir Richard Vernon/Gadshill/Fang, Rhett Henckel* as Archibald, Earl of Douglas/Mowbray, John Keabler* as Henry Percy (Hotspur)/Sir John Coleville, Maggie Kettering* as Doll Tearsheet/Ensemble, Kevin McGuire* as Henry Percy, Earl of Northumberland/Earl of Warwick, Steve Pickering* as Thomas Percy, Earl of Worcester /Pistol, Jude Sandy* as Ned Poins, Joel David Santner* as Sir Walter Blount/Lord Russel, Kate Skinner* as Mistress Quickly, Patrick Vaill* as Prince John Lancaster, STC Affiliated Artist Ted van Griethuysen* as Owen Glendower/Justice Shallow, STC Affiliated Artist Craig Wallace* as Earl of Westmoreland and Derrick L. Weeden* as Lord Chief Justice.
The cast also includes Julia Brandeberry, Michael Crowley, Luis Alberto Gonzalez, Max Jackson, Matthew McGee, Ade Otukoya, Alex Piper, Jack Powers, Brendon Schaefer, Vanessa Sterling and Nathan Winkelstein.
Henry IV Part 1 and 2 will feature set design by Alexander Dodge; costumes by Ann Hould-Ward; compositions, sound design and musical direction by Michael Roth; lighting design by Steven Strawbridge; and wig design by Paul Huntley.
Michael Kahn is assisted by Associate Director Alan Paul, Assistant Director Gus Heagerty, Assistant to the Director Nathanael Johnson, Voice and Text Coach Ellen O'Brien, Assistant Stage Manager Robyn M. Zalewski*, Assistant Stage Manager Hannah R. O'Neil*, Fight Directors Rick Sordelet and Christian Kelly-Sordelet, and Production Stage Manager Joseph Smelser*.
*Members of Actors' Equity Association, the Union of Professional Actors and Stage Managers.
Tickets are $20 - $115. Premium seating is available for all performances. Special discounts are available for military, students, seniors and patrons aged 35 and under. To purchase tickets or to learn more, patrons can call the box office at 202.547.1122 or visit ShakespeareTheatre.org.
Every Tuesday at 12 p.m., STC releases an allotment of $18 tickets to patrons ages 35 and younger. $18 tickets are limited to performances through the following Sunday and are available in person at the Box Office and via phone at 202.547.1122. Advance tickets are available for $25. There is a limit of four tickets per person. ID is always required to pick up Young Prose tickets.
MICHAEL KAHN (Shakespeare Theatre Company's Artistic Director/Director) has directed a wide variety of Shakespearean and classical works for STC, including Wallenstein, The Government Inspector, Strange Interlude, The Heir Apparent, Old Times, All's Well That Ends Well, The Liar, Richard II, The Alchemist, Design for Living and The Way of the World. Having brought international works like The National Theatre of Scotland's The Strange Undoing of Prudencia Hart and Théâtre de l'Atelier's Les Liaisons Dangereuse to the theatre, Kahn continues to demonstrate the versatility and relevance of STC's theatre programming with this season's productions. In 1991, he created the Free For All, which brings an STC production to audiences completely free of charge every year. The Free For All has reached more than 642,000 people to date. In addition to leading STC, he is also the founder of the Academy for Classical Acting at The George Washington University and the former Richard Rodgers Director of the Drama Division at Juilliard. Since the 1960s, Kahn's work has been seen by audiences across the country and the world: in New York City, both on Broadway and Off-Broadway, as well as at both the American Shakespeare Theatre and the McCarter Theatre where he served as Artistic Director concurrently. In 2003, STC performed his production of The Oedipus Plays at the Athens Festival in Greece, where it received standing ovations and critical acclaim. In the summer of 2006, the Company took Kahn's production of Love's Labor's Lost to the Royal Shakespeare Company's "Complete Works Festival" in Stratford-upon-Avon. Recently, Kahn was inducted into the Theater Hall of Fame and was recognized as an Honorary Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire.
STACY KEACH (Falstaff). STC Affiliated Artist Stacy Keach* returns to the Shakespeare Theatre Company after his lauded performance in King Lear in 2009. Broadway credits include Other Desert Cities, Indians, Deathtrap, Solitary Confinement and The Kentucky Cycle. He has recently penned a memoir titled, All in All: An Actor's Life On and Off the Stage. STC credits include title roles in both Macbeth and Richard III. Keach has most recently starred in Alexander Payne's Nebraska which was nominated for six Academy Awards.
EDWARD GERO (King Henry IV). STC Affiliated Artist Edward Gero* plays King Henry IV after participating in his 30th season at Shakespeare Theatre Company. Gero has recently starred in Red at Arena Stage and was featured in the hit Netflix show "House of Cards." Gero has received 4 Helen Hayes Awards, 14 nominations as well as a 2006 Emmy Award for "Before Dinosaurs" (Narrator), PBS.
MATTHEW AMENDT (Prince Hal). Matthew Amendt* makes his STC debut as Prince Hal. His Off-Broadway credits include Theatre for A New Audience's Much Ado About Nothing and played the title role The Acting Company's Henry V. Amendt received the 2013 Joe Dowling Fellow at Tyrone Guthrie Centre in Annaghmakerrig, Ireland as well as the Ivey Award for Best Emerging Artist.
ABOUT THE SHAKESPEARE THEATRE COMPANY: Recipient of the 2012 Regional Theatre Tony Award, the Shakespeare Theatre Company (STC) has become one of the nation's leading theatre companies. Today, STC is synonymous with artistic excellence and making classical theatre more accessible.
Under the leadership of Artistic Director Michael Kahn and Managing Director Chris Jennings, STC's innovative approach to Shakespeare and other classic playwrights has earned it the reputation as the nation's premier classical theatre company. By focusing on works with profound themes, complex characters and poetic language written by Shakespeare, his contemporaries and the playwrights he influenced, the Company's artistic mission is unique among theatre companies: to present theatre of scope and size in an imaginative, skillful and accessible American style that honors the playwrights' language and intentions while viewing their work through a 21st-century lens.
A leader in arts education, STC has a stable of initiatives that teach and excite learners of all ages, from school programs and acting classes to discussion series as well as accessible programs like the annual Free For All, one of STC's most beloved annual traditions, allowing audiences to experience Shakespeare at no charge.
Located in our nation's capital, STC performs in two theatres, the Lansburgh Theatre and Sidney Harman Hall in downtown Washington, D.C., creating a dynamic, cultural hub of activity that showcases STC as well as outstanding local performing arts groups and nationally renowned organizations. STC moved into the 451-seat Lansburgh Theatre in March 1992, after six years in residency in the Folger Library's Elizabethan theatre. At that time the Penn Quarter neighborhood was not considered desirable by many; since then, STC has helped drive its revitalization. The 774-seat Sidney Harman Hall opened in October 2007.
Photo Credit: Walter McBride