Kentucky Shakespeare’s Richard II

Today we bring you a play about the time when kings reined and all who opposed them were banished. That’s right! It’s Shakespeare’s Richard II, a great play about the battles taken and emotional strife caused by those who want to be king, and the kings themselves, playing now in Central Park by Kentucky Shakespeare.

The play opens with Henry Bolingbroke accusing Thomas Mowbray of treason. Both are banished from England by Richard II. Soon after, John of Gaunt, the father of Henry, dies. Richard seizes the property and denies Henry his father’s house and belongings. Trying to get back his life, Henry returns to England while Richard is at Ireland. What will happen when Richard returns? Who will be the new king? Find out in Richard II.

One of our favorite characters was Richard II because he started happy and you could see him change over time. We also liked that he showed compassion and mercy and accepted the fact that he could not be king. Our favorite scene was the trial between Henry and Thomas Mowbray because it was interesting and it was fun to see a battle of wits in between them. We also liked that it was toe to toe and had gut-busting Shakespearean-style humor. The part where gloves were thrown and punches were about to be thrown as well was especially funny. Another favorite character was Henry because he was full of wit; it was great to see the cunning remarks made by him. But in some cases he was kind, when his death was planned; he pardoned one of the planners out of the kindness in his heart. (Even though some would call it attempted murder)

Richard II a really good play. It is the first in the series of four plays called “Game of Kings” were you can see repeating actors play roles in tales of treachery and hope in an uncertain world. Kentucky Shakespeare is on the Cultural Pass  [Calendar here]. If you get a Festival Passport card punched at all the plays then you win a cool prize. This was an amazing play and we hope that you can come and see it.

Kentucky Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar

We went to see Julius Caesar at Iroquois Park for Shakespeare in the Parks. There were only six actors and each of them did an amazing job in this tragedy.

The story starts with Julius Caesar coming back to Rome and everyone is rejoicing his return except for Cassius who wants him dead. After talking to Cassius, Brutus changes from liking Caesar to thinking he is evil. Brutus is a gifted speaker so he gets Caska and Lucius Cinna to help, making a total of four conspirators to fight against Caesar.  Caesar is warned by a prophet to “beware the ides of March”, which Caesar ignores. On the ides of March, Caesar’s wife has a dream of a fountain of Caesar pouring out blood so she tells Caesar not to go to the Senate. Cassius tells Caesar not to worry because his wife interpreted the dream wrong, so he goes anyway. At a podium, Caesar is about to accept the position of king but is stabbed by the four conspirators and dies. What will happen to the conspirators? Who will be the new leader of Rome? Find out in Julius Caesar.

One of our favorite characters was Brutus because he thought he was doing the right thing when he killed Julius Caesar but he was being manipulated by Cassius the whole time. We like that he liked Julius but his mind was changed so easily. Our other favorite character was Cassius because he was so good at manipulating people. We like how he was able to change people’s opinions so easily. One of our favorite scenes was the scene where Julius Caesar was killed because Julius was so happy because he was becoming king but he was killed by Brutus and the other conspirators and everyone changed their mind from thinking that Caesar was the right person to thinking he was a bad person and deserved to die because he was a tyrant.  Something this play can teach us is that people can change their opinions on something so quickly so you need to think about what you do and who you side with before doing something.

We are definitely looking forward to Shakespeare in the Park this summer. The season will be Much Ado about Nothing, Richard II, and Julius Caesar. The Globe Players will be doing the Merchant of Venice and there will be community partners’ shows as well.


Moose and Turtle

Kentucky Shakespeare’s The Tempest

     Yesterday we went to see The Tempest performed by Kentucky Shakespeare at the Main branch of the Louisville Free Public Library. It was an awesome two-actor play. Our favorite characters were Caliban, Stephano, Ariel, and Prospero. We liked Caliban because he was grumpy when he objected to Prospero making him do stuff and Caliban refused because he was a slave who did not like doing all the work but he didn’t want to be pinched. We liked Stephano because he said funny things and tripped and fell. Ariel was great because he is mysterious and loyal and we thought it was really funny when he was bowing down to Prospero. Finally, we liked Prospero because he was a wizard and that automatically makes him awesome. Prospero also made everyone happy in the end. Our favorite scene was when Caliban was hiding and Stephano gave him a drink of wine and Caliban got so happy that he let Stephano make him his servant. Here is a short summery of the beginning of the play. Prospero and Miranda were on an island because Prospero used to be a duke and his brother Antonio kicked Prospero out. He stranded Prospero and his daughter, Miranda, on an island for 12 years. A boat with Antonio and the evil king of Naples comes near the island and Prospero makes a storm to make the boat crash but everyone comes out alive. Will Antonio be punished for his deeds? This is a great play that we think you should go and see at any of the 17 other library locations – see for the schedule. The complete version of The Tempest is showing in Central Park for beginning of the Shakespeare in the Park season starting June 3rd. Also, check Kentucky Shakespeare’s website to see if the 90-minute version “that Scottish play” is coming to a park near you. We are so excited that Kentucky Shakespeare is coming early to libraries and parks.

Moose and Turtle