THEATRE REVIEW: Henry V by Antic Disposition

WORTH A LOOK?: ***

WHERE: Middle Temple Hall

WHEN: 5/4, closes 6/4, tours UK throughout April

Middle Temple Hall is the London venue where Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night was first performed 400 years ago.

  • Read on for a picture inside the historic venue and tour details

As we approach the 400th anniversary of the Bard’s death (23 April 2016, folks) it seems a fitting location to catch this much praised World War One reimagining of Henry V.

The familiar history play is bookended by scenes in a battlefield hospital where a Shakespeare book is given as a gift, there is a play within a play, and … well that would be telling.

Antic Disposition’s fine adaptation is much enhanced by its historic setting and musical embellishments played live on stage by the cast throughout. The 120-strong audience couldn’t fail to be captivated by Shakespeare in this location which shares so much of his history as the sun sets through its ornate windows.

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The three rows on either side of the aisle running the length of the venue mean the audience is never far from the action. Close enough to appreciate even that the tennis balls that the French gift the English that so outrages them are in fact circular bandage rolls.

We weren’t as convinced by the reimagining as we would’ve liked but it’s well worth catching on its UK cathedral tour throughout the rest of April, details below.

  • Main picture by Scott Rylander via Antic Disposition. Tickets and tour details here.
  • Enjoyed this review? Follow its author on Twitter @NeilDurham

 

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