The Rose, Bankside is in the middle of a major restoration project so plays are performed on a small raised platform that is stage and ‘auditorium’.
Director Bronagh Lagan had a master stroke in choosing to use the whole of the space for her production of Henry VI part 1. Lagan had a ready-made set – dank, dark, full of ominous threat. This was high quality, dramatic storytelling performed by a company of young players, who wobbled a bit at ﬁrst but quickly got into their stride. Naturally, there was doubling up of parts and this was done well to avoid confusion – David Vaughan Knight did a ﬁne line in leering as Charles Dauphin yet moved with his portrayal of the broken-hearted Edmund Mortimer.
[highlighter color=”orange”] Actress Suzanne Marie, who played Joan, powered through her part.[/highlighter] Most enjoyable were the tense exchanges between the oily Gloucester, played by Oliver Lavery, and Winchester (Morgan Thomas).
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