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Henry V launches Shakespeare’s Globe Winter Season

10 November 2022 to 5 February 2023 Sam Wanamaker Playhouse

Performed in the intimate, indoor Sam Wanamaker Playhouse for the first time, witness Henry’s bombastic pursuit of power, throwing into question what it really means to be English.  Experience Shakespeare’s unnervingly relevant Henry V in a production that offers a different perspective on England’s hero.

Henry, the young and newly crowned king, is impatient to assert control over the people of England. Having received a humiliating gift from overseas, his bruised ego leads him to double down on a military invasion abroad in a bid to expand his green and pleasant land. But at what devastating cost?

Director Holly Race Roughan (Artistic Director, Headlong) said: “Shakespeare’s plays are packed with so many universal ideas, that they remain intriguingly relevant to contemporary society hundreds of years on. However, occasionally, one of his plays speaks to the present moment so directly, that it takes your breath away. Staging Henry V with the backdrop of the passing of Queen Elizabeth II, Brexit, and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, feels like one of these moments. This play that teems with the anxiety of royal succession, nationalism, war and imperialism, rips through the centuries and offers us a chance to reflect on our present moment in a powerfully heightened way. We were keen when we embarked on this production to not make a history play, but to treat the play as if it were a new piece of writing that is in conversation with our immediate experience. Our hope is that through this stripped back production, and lean edit, there is space for the audience to bring their imagination and question with us our present situation.

The cast of Henry V comprises Joséphine Callies as Katherine / Boy, James Cooney as Thomas / Orleans / Gower, Georgia Frost as Nym / Michael Williams / Rambures, Jon Furlong as Bardolph / John Bates / Constable of France, Joshua Griffin as Bedford / Fluellen, Eleanor Henderson as Queen of France / Prince Louis / Ambassador 1 / Le Fer, Oliver Johnstone as Henry V, Geoffrey Lumb as King of France / Erpingham / Governor of Harfleur / Ambassador 2, Helena Lymbery as Henry IV / Exeter and Dharmesh Patel as Scroop / Pistol / Montjoy / Officer.

The Globe’s winter season also includes the premiere of Hakawatis: Women of the Arabian Nights (1 December – 14 January) by Globe writer-in-residence Hannah Khalil. A Tamasha co-production directed by their Artistic Director Pooja Ghai. Hakawatis tells the story of a tyrant revenging his wife’s infidelity by wedding, bedding, and beheading a new bride every day. Years later, only five brides-in-waiting remain.

From 15 – 31 December, The Fir Tree returns to the open-air Globe Theatre, directed by Artistic Director Michelle Terry and written by Hannah Khalil. This re-imagining of Hans Christian Andersen’s classic tale includes puppets, carol-singing, and tree decorating for families under the wintry star-lit sky.

In the new year, Shakespeare’s most deadly revenge tragedy Titus Andronicus will run from 19 January – 15 April, directed by Jude Christian. Betrayed by a nation, and with a family in ruins, Roman general Titus Andronicus seeks justice the only way he knows how: tooth for tooth and limb for limb.

Finally, Associate Artistic Director Sean Holmes directs The Winter’s Tale (9 Feb – 16 April) to marks the start of the Globe’s year-long Folio 400th Anniversary celebrations. For the first time ever, the production will see audiences of The Winter’s Tale traverse between both iconic theatres, journeying from aristocratic Sicilia in the Sam Wanamaker Playhouse to pastoral Bohemia in the Globe Theatre.

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