Search

Theatre review: Henry V at the Old Red Lion Theatre

10:08 06 August 2012

Jack Morris in Henry V at the Old Red Lion Theatre. Photo by Richard Davenport

Jack Morris in Henry V at the Old Red Lion Theatre. Photo by Richard Davenport

©Richard Davenport.

Enthralling and original production compares King Henry to Tony Blair

Support your community by viewing your local businesses

Please wait

You will be able to read the article in 5 seconds

Thank you for supporting your local community

You may now read the article

»There have been numerous productions in recent times of Henry V, one of Shakespeare’s most celebrated plays.

But this one, part of the Old Red Lion’s repertory season, is unlike any made before.

Director Henry Filloux-Bennett takes the play and transforms it into a critical response to the second Iraq war, following the recent Iraq inquiry.

King Henry and his actions are compared to those of Tony Blair. A newly appointed leader guided by religious conviction; a threat to peace; a questionable case for war. The play asks of us: does nothing ever change?

Six actors, each playing multiple characters, bring us this portrayal of a modern war, complete with twenty-four hour news cycle, political spin, prisoner abuse and UN Resolutions.

Sections are cut from Shakespeare’s Henry V to create this modern slant, with intermittent video footage showing us Bush in cahoots with Blair, and the Iraq war.

There are two actors playing the part of the King – a Henry who is clearly modelled on Tony Blair, with New Labour mug in hand, (Jack Morris) and the Henry at war (Mark Field).

The experienced Steve Fortune plays Cambridge, Nicholas Kime brings some camp humour to roles especially that of the Dauphin, and Mark Field gives a solid performance as Henry going into battle.

But the excellent Jack Morris is the star of this show, his portrayal of Blair eerily accurate.

If you are looking for a traditional retelling of Henry V, this is surely not it. However, it is a thought provoking, highly original take on the play and one that will hold you enthralled throughout.

* Henry V is at the Old Red Lion Theatre in St John Street, EC1, until September 29. Call 0844 412 4307 or visit www.oldredliontheatre.co.uk for tickets.

0 comments

Latest Entertainment Stories

14:27
City Social: both the food and the view are equally breath-taking

Sky’s the limit for chef’s tower triumph

Yesterday, 12:27
With London nights catering to every taste, there's no need to spend New Year alone. Picture: Piotr Marcinski

Don’t panic if you haven’t made plans, there’s no shortage of ways to ring in 2015, says Alex Bellotti.

Wed, 14:38
Bar at Verden

Wine bar’s steak night has rare quality

Mon, 12:07
The decor in Finch's is party trendy kitsch, part chain pub

If your not a suit clad city type, there’s not all that much to tempt you down to dine on the unpromising stretch of City Road south of Old Street.

Most read entertainment

Twinkle, twinkle you little stars – thanks for making your homes so festive.

Offers for university places are at a record high.

That includes DVDs and piracy while Sony has also been asked to remove the trailer from the internet.

The US agency says an investigation has gathered enough evidence to conclude North Korean involvement.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the $m.global.archantvariables.NewspaperTitle e-edition today E-edition