Henry the Sixth, Part One


Henry the Sixth part one posterWritten by William Shakespeare

Directed by Jennifer Roberts-Smith

Performances: June 7, 19-20, 24

Venues: Helen Gardiner Phelan Playhouse; Theatre of the Arts, Modern Languages Building; McMaster University School of the Arts

Henry the Sixth, Part One (also variously known as 1 Henry VIHenry VI Part 11H6 and even, in arguably its earliest referenceHarey Vj), is amongst Shakespeare's earliest plays (though perhaps not written before its sequels), the first in a tetralogy chronologically followed by Henry the Sixth Part TwoHenry the Sixth Part Three, and Richard the Third. A volatile piece consumed with the Hundred Years' War, fought out between France and England over the right to claim the French crown, there is much evidence to suggest that Henry the Sixth, Part One was a popular success in performance, with contemporary accounts making reference to the gallantry of brave John Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury, as he fought to his death at the Battle of Castillon, an episode almost 150 years removed from Shakespeare's audiences, yet still able to elicit patriotic responses. A play that examines the roots to the famous Wars of the Roses, which set the Houses of York and Lancaster against one another for control of the English monarchy, Henry the Sixth, Part One is an unjustly neglected work: rarely performed but filled with memorable characters like the brave Talbot, crafty Richard Plantagenet (Duke of York), and, of course, the famous Joan la Pucelle - Joan of Arc

As research-in-performance, the University of Waterloo's production of Henry the Sixth, Part One looked to cast innovations, technological elements (like the stage-bound deployment of pyrotechnics and the logistics of staging siege scenes), and a sophisticated approach to stage combat in examining this challenging, fulfilling play.

Production and text dramaturgy by Toby Malone

With student research assistance from Kelsey Sewell

Check out the Dramaturgy Hub for the production.

Cast

Sharers

Sam Beuerle - Winchester and others

Rebecca Birrell – Bedford/Mortimer/ Gunner of Orleans/Lucy and others

Jessica Blondin – Gloucester and others

Mollie Garrert – York and others

Erik Van Dijk – Talbot and others

Journeymen

Alexandra Carruthers – Burgundy / Woodville / Gargave and others

Carly Derderian – Dauphin / Keeper / Bassett and others

Carleigh MacDonald – Reigner / Vernon and others

Daniel Ruginets – Warwick / Warder / Glansdale and others

Cameron Smith – Suffolk / Salisbury and others

Adam Winchester – Bastard / Mayor of London and others

Apprentices

Celena Alcock – Henry VI / Gunner’s Boy and others

Chantaine Green-Leach – Somerset and others

Emma Mann – Countess of Auvergne /  Young John Talbot / Margaret and others

Alan Shonfield – Joan of Arc and others

Creative Team

Director – Jennifer Roberts-Smith

Dramaturg – Toby Malone

Assistant Dramaturg – Kelsey Sewell

Scenographer – Paul J. Stoesser

Costume Designer – Sharon Secord

Fight Director – Daniel Levinson

Acting Coach – Paul Hopkins

Assistants to Fight Directors - Caitlyn Derderian, Derrick Rabethge

Production Team

Production Manager – Janelle Rainville

Technical Director – Gill Lesperance

Stage Manager – Zac Gungl

Carpentry and Sound Coordinator – Cameron Jolliffe

Props and Paint Coordinator – Chelsea Vanoverbeke

Wardrobe Coordinator – Alice Wang

Lighting Coordinator – Alyssa Almeida

Special Thanks

Paul J. Stoesser

Daniel Levinson

Peter Freund

Mark Haasnoot

Amaka Ejitzu

Daniel Ruginets

Bianca Hossain

Kevin Quarmby

Lisa Matsumoto

Bill Chesney

Christopher Sutherland

Sandy Thi

Karolina Szymczyk

Caitlyn Derderian

Derrick Rabethge

Taras Cymbalisty

PLS- Poculi Ludique Societas

Peter Cockett

McMaster School of the Arts

Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies, University of Toronto