It's Thursday, and that means it's time for our regular studio sojourn with theater critic J. Wynn Rousuck, who joins us every week with her reviews of the Maryland regional stage. Today, she tells us about Chesapeake Shakespeare Company's new production of Henry IV Part II, one of the Bard's major historical plays, and the repertory companion to Henry IV, Part I, which the Company performed earlier this season and in tandem with Part II on a series of recent Saturday marathons.
In this historical sequel rich with explorations of paternal relationships, King Henry IV's rogue son, Prince Hal - a carousing and impulsive young man in the sway of a friendship with a rough-edged knight named Falstaff - faces new responsibilities as the king's health grows increasingly frail, and as the king's armies battle to put down an insurrection. Those armies eventually triumph, and Prince Hal is reconciled with his dying father. And as Hal assumes the throne as King Henry V, he lets Falstaff know their reckless friendship is history.
Henry IV, Part II is co-directed for the Chesapeake Shakespeare Company by its founder and artistic director Ian Gallanar, and by Company actor and CSC associate artistic director Gerrad Alex Taylor. The production's cast of more than three dozen actors and musicians features resident Company members Seamus Miller as Prince Hal, Ron Heneghan as King Henry and Gregory Burgess as Falstaff.
Henry IV, Part II continues at Baltimore's Chesapeake Shakespeare Company through April 7.