Richard II

  • Katharine Goodland
  • John O’Connor
Part of the A Directory of Shakespeare in Performance Series book series (DSP)


Besides being prudent, this version of “Richard” is clear, intelligent and not invariably stodgy. It also boasts an impressive performance by Stephen D. Newman as Richard’s usurper, Bolingbroke… Richard Kneeland play’s the doomed king as very small potatoes indeed—insecure in power, petulant out of it. There is poignance in his defeat, but it is a Willy Loman kind of poignance… Newman as Bolingbroke… makes an enigmatic part even more enigmatic, never really letting us in on what makes this brusque soldier tick. But the man’s shrewdness and personal force, his utter suitability for power, are finely rendered. Newmans granite-voiced command of the Shakespearean line is also impressive. (Kneeland tends to be a little choppy)… The other two performances worthy of note are Tom Toner’s John of Gaunt, as dignified a patriarch as most, and rather more vigorous; and Theodore Sorel’s Mowbray, spirited but a little sloppy when the verse needs high speed… Miss Kellner’s slightly cramped set is dominated by a golden crown hanging from the ceiling. It is not only hollow (as Shakespeare observed) but miles too big for Richard. A nice point, but surely there is more to this play than that. (Dan Sullivan, Los Angeles Times, 17 June 1970)


Artistic Director Chess Piece French Court Stage Floor Early Scene 
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Copyright information

© Katharine Goodland and John O’Connor 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Katharine Goodland
  • John O’Connor

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