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We Three Kings Explaining Shakespeare | Oberon’s Orb

By September 16, 2013 One Comment

Hello all Francis is off this week so I (Steven) will be filling in for this week’s Oberon’s Orb.  On the docket this week we have PBS creating a miniseries pertaining to Shakespearean Royals, David Tennant’s Richard II has its trailer released and a video explaining Shakespeare gets released and goes viral. All that and much more, so without further ado let’s dive right in.

PBS putting the polish to Hollow Crown:

Joe Armstrong as Hotspur and Michelle Dockery as Kate Percy in the Hollow Crown’s ‘Henry IV’ episode. / Joss Barratt/Provided by Neal Street Productions
Originally found at Democrat and Chronicle

PBS (The Public Broadcasting Station) has been hard at work on a new 8 hour mini-series for the fall season. Called The Hollow Crown, this series will be showing in successive order: Richard II, Henry IV Part 1 and 2 and Henry V. What makes these different is that these are not filmed stage productions but rather actual films. Shot in beautiful locations these 4 films tell the very complicated history of the succession of the English Throne to Henry V after Richard II was deposed and murdered. They form a cycle of plays known as The Henriad-a historical tetralogy that is ultimately at its core ” a father/son tale. Starting with Richard II, the films also star a stellar cast- Ben Whitshaw will be playing Richard II while Jeremy Irons and Tom Hiddleston will be playing Henry IV and V respectively, while Simon Russel Beale will play probably the most well know character Sir John Falstaff. The Hollow Crown will run over 4 nights  at 9 p.m. on successive Fridays from Sept. 20 through Oct. 11.

In other Richard II news…

Tennant’s Richard II Gets Theatrical Trailer:

David Tennant’s- famous for his beloved incarnation of The Doctor and noted Shakespearean actor-  and the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Richard II has sent out its first official trailer on Youtube. Put on by The Royal Shakespeare Company, Richard II tells the story of the young King Richard II his reign, deposing and murder and the start of the aftermath and consequences of what happens. All of which are further explored in Richard II, Henry IV Parts 1 and 2 and Henry V. Starring David Tennant, Richard II will be captured on film during the November 13 performance. It is to be shown in select cities in United States on December 3 2013 and January 2 2014.

The cast includes Elliot Barnes-Worrell (Groom), Antony Byrne (Mowbray), Sean Chapman (Northumberland), Marty Cruickshank (Duchess of York), Oliver Ford Davies (Duke of York), Gracy Goldman (Lady in Waiting), Marcus Griffiths(Greene), Emma Hamilton (The Queen), Jim Hooper (Bishop of Carlisle), Youssef Kerkour (Willoughby),Jane Lapotaire(Duchess of Gloucester), Nigel Lindsay (Bolingbroke), Jake Mann (Bagot), Sam Marks (Bushy), Miranda Nolan (Lady in Waiting), Keith Osborn (Scroop), Michael Pennington (John of Gaunt), Joshua Richards (Ross/Lord Marshall),Oliver Rix (Aumerle), David Tennant (Richard II),Simon Thorp (Salisbury) and Edmund Wiseman (Harry Percy). So if you do go to the RSC production of Richard II, let us know you thought about it.

Finally in news not related to Richard II…

Laura Benanti Explains Shakespeare Goes Viral:

The folks over at Theatre Mania have gotten Laura Benanti-star of television and Broadway to explain the plots of Shakespeare’s plays and it has gone viral. So not to be left out here is a video Laura Benanti explaining the plot to Macbeth:

Check out more of the videos on YouTube, you will not be disappointed.

Well that’s all for this week’s Oberon’s Orb. See you all next week.


Author Steven

Steven has been with The Shakespeare Standard since its inception in 2009. He has had an interest in Shakespeare since acting in A Midsummer Night's Dream in college. You can reach him directly at He currently works as an editor for Foolery with the column of MEMEnto Merry.

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  • Loki, The Terminator, and Laura Benanti Walk into the Bard | Foolery and Miscellaneous News | The Shakespeare Standard says:

    […] scholar she is not. Last week, our Steven Van Overbeke shared Benanti’s unique take on Macbeth, but her take on Richard III is, if possible, even more […]

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