Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Come make him stand upon this molehill here ...

Oh friends ...  I had such a fantastic time yesterday working on the smart and sexy new adaptation of Henry VI by Ben Prusiner  (with Re:Verse Theatre) -- one of the brightest shining stars on the theatre horizon. Ben's done a fantastic adaptation of the trilogy of Henry VI (with a touch of Henry V) that heightens the strain of perpetual war, and I had the great privilege of playing Margaret! (Talk about a dream!). Ben assembled a cast the stuff that dreams are made of: talented, giving, and passionate about the work entrusted them. It was an absolute joy to be there -- in every regard. I woke up this morning, unable to shake Margaret, and so I thought I would share this fantastic speech with you. This is Margaret's 'molehill' speech: one of the best opportunities to "chew up the scenery" -- as they say! I also used my best actor's sense memory to channel the outstanding performance given by the of the Duke of York, who made it especially fun to speak these words. (His "she-wolf of France" speech that followed was absolutely amazing!) Ben will be hard at work continuing to refine his vision, and I can't wait for the next incarnation.

Brave warriors, Clifford and Northumberland,
Come, make him stand upon this molehill here,
That raught at mountains with outstretched arms,
Yet parted but the shadow with his hand.
What! was it you that would be England's king?
Was't you that revell'd in our parliament,
And made a preachment of your high descent?
Where are your mess of sons to back you now?
The wanton Edward, and the lusty George?
And where's that valiant crook-back prodigy,
Dicky your boy, that with his grumbling voice
Was wont to cheer his dad in mutinies?
Or, with the rest, where is your darling Rutland?
Look, York: I stain'd this napkin with the blood
That valiant Clifford, with his rapier's point,
Made issue from the bosom of the boy;
And if thine eyes can water for his death,
I give thee this to dry thy cheeks withal.
Alas poor York! but that I hate thee deadly,
I should lament thy miserable state.
I prithee, grieve, to make me merry, York.
What, hath thy fiery heart so parch'd thine entrails
That not a tear can fall for Rutland's death?
Why art thou patient, man? thou shouldst be mad;
And I, to make thee mad, do mock thee thus.
Stamp, rave, and fret, that I may sing and dance.
Thou wouldst be fee'd, I see, to make me sport:
York cannot speak, unless he wear a crown.
A crown for York! and, lords, bow low to him:
Hold you his hands, whilst I do set it on.

Putting a paper crown on his head
Ay, marry, sir, now looks he like a king!
Ay, this is he that took King Henry's chair,
And this is he was his adopted heir.
But how is it that great Plantagenet
Is crown'd so soon, and broke his solemn oath?
As I bethink me, you should not be king
Till our King Henry had shook hands with death.
And will you pale your head in Henry's glory,
And rob his temples of the diadem,
Now in his life, against your holy oath?
O, 'tis a fault too too unpardonable!
Off with the crown, and with the crown his head;
And, whilst we breathe, take time to do him dead.

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