All entries for Friday 19 October 2007

October 19, 2007

The Spirit of Agincourt

Any rugby fans out there? If so, and if you were watching the ITV coverage of the England vs. France world cup semi-final, you would have caught a little bit of Shakespeare in the build-up! Some bright spark at the RSC realised that millions would be watching, and that an England vs. France battle on France’s home ground had a certain resonance with their new production of Henry V. With newspapers banging on about the ‘Spirit of Agincourt’ and printing the famous St. Crispins Day speech, the link was fairly obvious!

Geoffrey Streatfeild (Henry V)

Which is how Geoffrey Streatfeild, as Prince Hal, came to recite the famous speech in the build-up to the match, helping to get the nation’s blood pumping. The result was right too! Did anyone happen to actually see this little performance? I’d be really interested to know quite how cheesey it was!

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Peter Kirwan is Teaching Associate in Shakespeare and Early Modern Drama at the University of Nottingham and a reviewer of Shakespearean theatre for several academic journals.

The Bardathon is his experimental review blog, covering productions of (or based on) all early modern plays. The aim is to combine immediate reactions with the detail and analysis of the academic review.

Theatre criticism always needs more voices. Please comment with your own views and contributions!

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