Everybody’s favorite Shakespearian villain is haunting the streets of Baltimore again. This time at Baltimore Shakespeare Factory’s indoor performance space, The Great Hall Theatre at St. Mary’s on Roland Ave.
The Factory presents the Bard’s works as they were originally presented:
- Universal lighting
- Minimal sets
- Music period to the time
- Cross gender casting
- And actors taking on multiple roles.
Given The Great Hall’s thrust stage and the the fact that they keep the lights up it is no wonder that as an audience you feel very engaged in the play. The players can see YOU as much as you can see them, and when Richard cracks some scheme or Elizabeth pleads to the heavens for mercy… they are talking to you.
This production snaps along at about 2 hours and 45 minutes (plus intermission) and stars Chris Cotterman as Richard. Cotterman is ruthless and –somehow– heartbreaking in the role. I (very unexpectedly) found myself (kind of) routing for the guy. Ian Blackwell Rogers– who won me over as Macbeth and Hamlet in past Factory productions — is delightfully oily as the power hunger Buckingham. And Lily Kerrigan, Kelly Dowling and Barbara Madison Hauck do justice to the trio of women (Lady Anne, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Margaret) who have their lives torn apart by Richard’s ambitions. The show is directed by Tom Delise.
You’ve got one more weekend to catch it as the show runs through April April 19.
*I was lucky enough to design the promotional materials for the Factory’s production.