British Universities Film & Video Council

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Henry VIII

Synopsis
Video recording, using a single, fixed, camera, of the 1983 Royal Shakespeare Company’s production of Henry VIII. Directed by Howard Davies and David Edgar with Richard Griffiths as Henry VIII and John Thaw as Wolsey. The production offered a Brechtian interpretation with deliberate anachronisms, inviting comparisons between Henry’s regime and that of Stalin’s.
Language
English
Country
Great Britain
Medium
Video
Technical information
Colour / Sound
Recording date
19 Jan 1984
Duration
196 mins

Credits

Director
David Edgar; Howard Davies
Writer
William Shakespeare
Music
Ilona Sekacz
Production Design
Hayden Griffin
Costume
Deirdre Clancy
Cast
Richard GriffithsKing Henry VIII
Gemma JonesQueen Katherine
Richard O’CallaghanThomas Cranmer, Archbishop of Canterbury
John ThawCardinal Wolsey
Sarah BergerAnne Boleyn
Bruce AlexanderDuke of Norfolk
Campbell MorrisonSergeant-at-Arms
Caroline HarrisAnne’s lady (Courtier)
Charles LawsonGentleman (2)
Christopher NeameLord Sandys
Clyde PollittGriffith
Clyde PollittSurveyor
Cyril NriGentleman (3)
Cyril NriCourtier
David SchofieldDuke of Buckingham
Eileen PageCourtier
Eileen PagePatience
Emma WatsonCourtier
Geoffrey BeeversLord Chamberlain
Henry GoodmanSir Thomas Lovell
John DicksDuke of Suffolk
John NolanArchbishop
John NolanLord Mayor/Courtier/Captain
John NolanLord Abergavenny
Lesley DuffCourtier
Martin MilmanGentleman (1)
Nigel CookeEarl of Surrey
Nigel CookeCourtier
Oliver Ford DaviesGardiner, later Bishop of Winchester
Paul GreenwoodThomas Cromwell
Paul MooneyCourtier/Soldier
Paul MooneyPorter’s Man
Richard GarnettBrandon
Richard GarnettMessenger/Courtier
Richard O’CallaghanCourtier
Roger HumeCardinal Campeius
Roger HumePorter
Sheridan BallCourtier
Stanley PageBishop of Lincoln

Additional Details

Theatre
Royal Shakespeare Theatre
Theatre company
Royal Shakespeare Company
Production type
Stage Recordings
Historical period
Elizabethan
Plays
Henry VIII
Subjects
Drama
Keywords
Shakespeare, William (1564-1616)

Notes

General
Ilona Sekacz composed a pastiche of Kurt Weill for the production to match Davies’ Brechtian interpretation.
History
Press night 14 June 1983
Stills
Stills from, and design notes on, the production are available on the Arts and Humanities Performing Arts Data Service (AHDS) at http://ahds.ac.uk/performingarts/collections/designing-shakespeare.htm
Reviews
McCullough, Christopher J. ‘From Brecht to Brechtian: Estrangement and Appropriation’ in Holderness, Graham (ed). Politics of Theatre and Drama (New York: St Martin’s Press, 1992), pp120-3. [Uses John Barton’s Richard II and Howard Davies’s Henry VIII to illustrate how the term "Brechtian" has been used to describe plays by someone other than Brecht.]

Production Company

Name

Royal Shakespeare Company

Web
https://www.rsc.org.uk External site opens in new window
Address
Royal Shakespeare Theatre
Waterside
Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire
CV37 6BB

Archive

Name

Shakespeare Centre Library and Archive

Email
scla@shakespeare.org.uk
Web
https://www.shakespeare.org.uk/ External site opens in new window
Phone
01789 204016 (bookings)
Fax
01789 262073
Address
Henley Street
Stratford-upon-Avon
CV37 6QW

Record Stats

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