By Howard Brenton
13 JUN - 13 JUL 2013 — Drama
Auckland Theatre Company
2 hours and 25 minutes, including a 20 minute interval
Beguiling temptress or feisty schemer?
Hunting through an old chest, the flamboyant, newly-crowned James I discovers the controversial legacy of Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII's notorious second wife. Time jumps back 70 years, when the witty, clever and flirtatious Anne was in love with not only Henry, but also the most dangerous ideas of her day. Conspiring with the exiled heretic William Tyndale, she plots to make England Protestant—forever.
Compelling, shrewd, funny and celebratory, Anne Boleyn leaps cunningly between generations, mortal dangers and shifting allegiances to expose the life and legacy of the woman dubbed 'the whore who changed Britain.'
...ATC's sumptuous production of Anne Boleyn offers a bracingly intelligent vision of the Reformation as it plunges us into the complex theological disputes that underpinned Henry VIII's marital discord.
A mighty ensemble makes a mighty production to befit this version of Queen Anne.
...ATC's team, led by director Colin McColl and his first-time assistant Hera Dunleavy, are equally fearless in their presentation, allowing their creatives to bask in unbound freedom. In addition, their rich cast is lined with Auckland's version of theatre royalty, with many wonderful past leaders of old theatre companies which burned so bright before they fell, making a welcome return to the stage, after such a long absence.
Colin McColl’s production is high-octane with some standout performances.
This production spoils the audience...
All the main characters appear to inhabit the stage as separate stand-up comedians with their array of witty lines