REVIEW — A complex, entertaining, well-acted 'Henry IV, Part 1'

July 24, 2014

Juliet Wittman, Westword

One of the wonderful things about Henry IV, Part 1, now receiving a strong production at the Colorado Shakespeare Festival, is the way it's structured — the parallels drawn, the echoes and resonances. 

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The primary characters are brilliantly drawn, complex, entertaining, and tantalizingly morally ambiguous. ...  Geoffrey Kent comes close to galloping away with the entire production in the role; his Hotspur is tough and quick to anger but also very funny, and both rough and tender with his wife, Kate, portrayed by Jamie Anne Romero in a lovely performance. ... As Hal, Benjamin Bonenfant provides a strong balance to Kent's Hotspur. A lightweight, capering imp at the beginning — though showing hints of ruthless determination — he grows into his royal role in front of our eyes. ... Michael Winters is a deft, funny Falstaff. Sam Gregory gives a wonderfully committed performance as the perplexed, very human king, balancing skillfully between anguish and unexpected humor.

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(CSF's Henry IV, Part 1 is) a well-acted and sometimes inspiring production.

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Photo: Left to right, Benjamin Bonenfant as Prince Hal, Jenna Bainbridge as Lady Mortimer and Peter Simon Hilton as Glendower. Patrick Campbell/University of Colorado.