Shakespeare famously wrote in As You Like It that, “all the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players.”
Thanks to producer, actor, writer and director David Meadow, that holds truer now than ever before in these midsummer-dreaming days of lockdown. He has assembled actors from across the globe to perform Shakespeare’s beloved history plays from their living rooms as a series of livestream events spread across four months.
Dubbed the very Game of Throne’s sounding Age of Crowns, it’s a collaboration between St Kilda’s Alex Theatre, Melbourne actors’ company Circle in the Sand and the International Actors Ensemble. The latter is a band of merry players who met at Shakespeare’s Globe in London in 2015 and who and hail from no fewer than 14 different countries.
The show must go online. Taking a bow on Monday April 27 at 7pm AEST, Karlis Zaid plays the war-hungry king in Richard II. From then on there’s a new play every fortnight, cycling through the Henriad and The War of the Roses plays, plus some much-needed comic relief from the power-hungry plotting and bloody battles with The Merry Wives of Windsor.
Coming to a close with Montgomery Sutton as both Richard III and the Duke of Gloucester on August 31, in a reversal of the Shakespearean tradition of men playing the female parts, Amy Bradney-George will portray King Henry VI. Seton Pollock plays the wayward Hal, with Jonathan fuller rounding out the main cast as both Henry IV and Bolingbroke.
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