More philosopher than king, Richard II is an intelligent but ineffectual monarch. A botched mediation between the Duke of Norfolk and Henry Bolingbroke begins a series of miscalculations that isolate Richard II from his ever-shrinking band of supporters. Worse, the calculating Bolingbroke has maneuvered himself to be Richard’s successor, a position that can be realized only with Richard’s death. The first in Shakespeare’s second cycle of history plays, Richard II is written entirely in verse, making it one of the master playwright’s most musical creations. Gerald Freedman, former artistic director of the New York Shakespeare Festival and Great Lakes Theater Festival, directs Wallace Acton, last seen at The Shakespeare Theatre in the title role of Peer Gynt, as Richard, leading a cast that includes Tana Hicken as the Duchess of York, Andrew Long as Bolingbroke, David Sabin as the Duke of York, and Ted van Griethuysen as John of Gaunt.
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