Shakespeare At The Tobacco Factory's HENRY V Comes To The Stephen Joseph Theatre
Acclaimed Bristol-based theatre company Shakespeare at the Tobacco Factory brings Shakespeare's greatest history to Scarborough's Stephen Joseph Theatre next month.
Henry V, directed by Elizabeth Freestone, can be seen at the SJT from Tuesday 9 to Saturday 13 October.
A divided nation. Trouble on the continent. An ambitious young prince.
Emerging from his wild youth with a sense of purpose and adventure, Henry V wages war on France with devastating efficiency. But at what cost? How can he be a good leader and a good man? What compromises must be made in the name of victory?
Shakespeare's play is a thrilling examination of the nature of power. It explores the burden of leadership and explodes the myth of heroism. It depicts the powerful and the powerless fighting side by side. With characters drawn from across the United Kingdom, the play is a democratic portrayal of the ruler and the ruled.
Henry V compels us to examine our place in the world and look at our complex relationship with patriotism. Above all it speaks of the moral responsibility of our leaders: 'Every subject's duty is the king's, but every subject's soul is his own.'
Ben Hall joins stf for the first time to play the title role in Henry V. Ben's most recent credits include the RSC productions of Coriolanus and Salome, and The Durrells and The Hollow Crown on TV.
Ben says: "I think there can be two images of Henry: the heroic and the war criminal. What I love about Shakespeare's version is he takes both these ideas, brings the dilemma of the man vs the crown to the forefront, and by doing so makes him relatable. I think the steeliness and heroism is still there but there is a darker side to him, and a vulnerability."
Director Elizabeth Freestone was Artistic Director of Pentabus Theatre Company from 2012-17 where her directing work includes world premieres of Here I Belong by Matt Hartley, Each Slow Dusk by Rory Mullarkey and As The Crow Flies by Hattie Naylor.
For the RSC Elizabeth's directing work includes The Rape of Lucrece, a radical interpretation of Shakespeare's poem which premiered at the Edinburgh International Festival and continues to tour internationally to five star reviews and sell-out performances.
She says: "I'm so excited to be working with this stellar cast on Henry V. Our ensemble company will relish digging into this exciting play, portraying the whole of society on the Agincourt battlefield - kings, captains, soldiers and civilians, here in Shakespeare's play given equal voice and prominence. The questions Shakespeare raises about leadership, national identity and the cost of war are at the forefront of all our minds."
Henry V can be seen in the Round at the SJT at 7.30pm on Tuesday 9, Wednesday 10 and Friday 12 October; at 1.30pm and 7pm on Thursday 11 October, and at 2.30pm and 7.30pm on Saturday 13 October. Tickets are priced from £10, and can be booked at the box office on 01723 370541 or via the website: www.sjt.uk.com
Photo Credit: Craig Fuller