"Believing himself anointed by God and infallible, the narcissistic King Richard over-taxes the populace and issues decrees by caprice..."I saw King Richard II yesterday at Tri-C Parma. James Rankin was petulant, and sarcastic, and he shined. One can understand there are different ways to portray a character, i have to go see other portrayals to compare; but i enjoyed his performance. He is the one who says, "For God's sake, let us sit upon the ground and tell sad stories of the death of kings...".
John of Gaunt gives the longish, and longing love paean to England, "...this scepter'd isle, this earth of majesty, this seat of Mars, this other Eden, demi-paradise...". Shakespeare loved his homeland. In this production, the sign of the cross is made many times. Shakespeare mentions the sacraments, he was a Catholic Englishman in non-Catholic times.
These fellows do yeomen's work in getting the Bard to the public. They play in several towns in the area, and the sites vary. Parma allows for comfortable seating under linden trees, and the terraced amphitheatre of grass and concrete gives you the choice to blanket the grass, or sit on the warm stone. Before evening it is warmed by the sun, and after 7 o'clock fully shaded. But the brick back drop of the building behind the stage does not make fotos interesting. Money is short for costumes. Chaucer was a contemporary of Richard. Business suits, and American style commando camouflage really does not work well.