The Royal Shakespeare Company

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HENRY VI: PART ONE

By William Shakespeare

During the Covid-19 pandemic, we opened the virtual doors to our rehearsal rooms so audiences could see the work behind our live performances.

Giving unprecedented access into the process of theatre-making, this is a unique opportunity to experience Shakespeare's early play which is performed as a rehearsal room run through. Experience the thrill of rebellion, the brutality of battle, and ambition without boundaries.

Beginning Shakespeare's Wars of the Roses trilogy, Henry VI Part One follows a young and reclusive Henry, who is proclaimed King of England after the death of his father.

 

"The real revelation came on the Friday of the first week when Horsley led a verse session with six of the cast. He firstly got them to physicalise the iambic pentameter by repeatedly counting from one to 10, with appropriate stresses, as they crossed the rehearsal-room floor. As he said, “It’s a bit like Sesame Street to start with” but it paid off in that it instilled the rhythm of the standard Shakespearean verse-line.

Watching this session took me back to John Barton’s 1984 TV series Playing Shakespeare, which offered a definitive analysis of Shakespeare’s verse."

Michael Billington, The Guardian