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Sunday, June 24, 2012

Des McAnuff’s Henry V starts previews at Stratford Shakespeare Festival

Stratford Shakespeare Festival News Release

June 22, 2012… The epic story of King Henry V’s battle with the French during the Hundred Years’ War comes alive on the Festival Theatre stage in William Shakespeare’s historical drama Henry V. The production, directed by Artistic Director Des McAnuff, begins previews on June 24.

“We live in an era when war in foreign lands is again very much on our minds,” says Mr. McAnuff, “and Henry V is one of the greatest dramas about war ever written. In part, that’s because Shakespeare doesn’t take sides: this is neither an overtly anti-war play nor a jingoistic celebration of military glory. Instead, it confronts head-on all the paradoxes and ambivalences inherent in warfare and raises the kinds of questions we still struggle with today. When is war justified? What are its rules of engagement? And how do you hold on to your moral compass in the heat of combat?”


Though written as the final part of a tetralogy (preceded by Richard II, Henry IV, Part 1 and Henry IV, Part 2), Henry V is a self-contained drama in its own right. It tells the story of the young king seeking to unite his strife-torn kingdom by launching a campaign to seize the throne of France. But after his invasion’s initial success, the king finds himself facing a vastly superior French force on the fields of Agincourt – and with it, the ultimate test of his leadership.

“I started my Shakespeare career by directing Henry IV, Part 1 in New York,” says Mr. McAnuff, “and it has long been a dream of mine to tackle the other plays in the cycle. So it means a lot to me to be doing Henry V – especially here at Stratford. This Festival can present these epic plays, these vast canvases, on a scale that most theatres simply can’t match. It is immensely rewarding to be staging this action-packed yet profoundly thought-provoking work with one of the greatest theatre companies in the world.”

“Des’s imagination is limitless and he has a way of harnessing the powers and resources of the theatre to create a spectacular production that is both visually and emotionally stunning,” says General Director Antoni Cimolino. “His production of Henry V this season will be a case in point: our audiences can expect to be held on the edge of their seats and completely engrossed in one of Shakespeare’s most legendary dramas.”

The production features Aaron Krohn as the title character. Mr. Krohn made his Stratford debut as Lenny in last season’s production of The Homecoming and appeared in Mr. McAnuff’s production of Twelfth Night. His Broadway credits include The Farnsworth Invention, The Coast of Utopia and Julius Caesar. He has also worked extensively off-Broadway and on television and has performed many voices for several anime films, including Kaji in Neon Genesis Evangelion, Murakomo in Blue Seed and Go in Super Atragon.

Mr. Krohn will be joined on stage by Ben Carlson as Captain Fluellen, Juan Chioran as Montjoy, Deborah Hay as Alice, Tom Rooney as Ensign Pistol and Timothy D. Stickney as the Duke of Exeter.

Artistic credits for this production include Set Designer Robert Brill, Costume Designer Paul Tazewell, Lighting Designer Michael Walton, Composer Michael Roth, Sound Designer Peter McBoyle, Dramaturge Robert Blacker, Choreographer Nicola Pantin, Fight Director Steve Rankin and Associate Director Lezlie Wade.

Henry V is sponsored by Scotiabank. Production support is generously provided by Claire & Daniel Bernstein, Jane Petersen-Burfield and Family, and Catherine and David Wilkes.

This production is dedicated to the memory of John Neville, Artistic Director of the Stratford Shakespeare Festival from 1986 to 1989.

The Stratford Shakespeare Festival’s 2012 season runs until October 28, featuring Much Ado About Nothing; 42nd Street, The Matchmaker; Henry V; You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown; The Pirates of Penzance; A Word or Two; Cymbeline; Wanderlust; Elektra; The Best Brothers; Hirsch and The War of 1812.

Cast (in alphabetical order)
Ensemble................................................................................ Barbara Barsky
Captain Gower......................................................................... Wayne Best
King Charles VI......................................................................... Richard Binsley
Constable................................................................................ Michael Blake
Archbishop of Canterbury........................................................ James Blendick
Captain Fluellen....................................................................... Ben Carlson
Lord Scrope of Masham,
Governor of Harfleur, Lord Rambures....................................... Dan Chameroy
Montjoy.................................................................................. Juan Chioran
Bishop of Ely, John Bates.......................................................... David Collins
Musician.................................................................................. Brennan Connolly
Captain MacMorris, Monsieur le Fer......................................... Keith Dinicol
Earl of Cambridge, Lord Grandpré ............................................ Victor Ertmanis
Duke of Bedford...................................................................... Ryan Field
Duke of York, Duke of Burgundy............................................... Xuan Fraser
Captain Jamy, Duke of Orléans................................................. Stephen Gartner
Musician.................................................................................. Graham Hargrove
Alice........................................................................................ Deborah Hay
Lieutenant Bardolph, Sir Thomas Erpingham ............................ Randy Hughson
Michael Williams...................................................................... Luke Humphrey
Messenger.............................................................................. Robin Hutton
Musician.................................................................................. Mary Jay
Catherine................................................................................ Bethany Jillard
King Henry V............................................................................ Aaron Krohn
Queen Isabel........................................................................... Claire Lautier
Sir Thomas Grey, Alexander Court............................................ Roy Lewis
Musician.................................................................................. Steve McDade
Hostess................................................................................... Lucy Peacock
Louis the Dauphin.................................................................... Gareth Potter
Corporal Nim, Earl of Salisbury.................................................. Christopher Prentice
Ensign Pistol............................................................................. Tom Rooney
Earl of Westmorland ................................................................ Stephen Russell
Duke of Gloucester ................................................................. Tyrone Savage
Duke of Exeter ........................................................................ Timothy D. Stickney
Musician.................................................................................. Kate Stone
Musician.................................................................................. Rob Stone
Boy.......................................................................................... Sophia Walker

Artistic team
Director................................................................................... Des McAnuff
Set Designer............................................................................ Robert Brill
Costume Designer................................................................... Paul Tazewell
Lighting Designer..................................................................... Michael Walton
Composer................................................................................ Michael Roth
Sound Designer....................................................................... Peter McBoyle
Dramaturge............................................................................. Robert Blacker
Choreographer........................................................................ Nicola Pantin
Fight Director........................................................................... Steve Rankin
Aerial Stunt Coordinator........................................................... Adrian Young
Archery ................................................................................... Matt Richardson
Associate Director.................................................................... Lezlie Wade
Associate Costume Designer.................................................... Jessica Poirier-Chang
Assistant Director..................................................................... Eric Benson
Assistant Set Designer.............................................................. Devon Bhim
Assistant Costume Designer..................................................... Jenna McCutchen
Assistant Lighting Designer....................................................... Tristan Tidswell
Assistant Sound Designer......................................................... Verne Good
Assistant Dramaturge............................................................... Jacob Gallagher-Ross
Assistant Fight Director............................................................ Todd Campbell
Fight Captain............................................................................ Wayne Best
Stage Manager........................................................................ Maxwell T. Wilson
Assistant Stage Manager.......................................................... Kathleen Harrison
Assistant Stage Manager ......................................................... Angela Marshall
Assistant Stage Manager.......................................................... Cynthia Toushan
Production Assistant................................................................ Kelsey Rae
Production Stage Manager....................................................... Margaret Palmer
Technical Director.................................................................... Jeff Scollon


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Andrea Smitko
Publicity Coordinator

Stratford Shakespeare Festival
55 Queen Street | PO Box 520 | Stratford ON
| N5A 6V2
Toll Free 1.800.561.1233 | Local 519.271.4040 x2410
Box Office: Toll Free 1.800.567.1600 | Local 519.273.1600

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