Beauties, Barmaids and Battleaxes Feb 2003

Post 4

BCTT FEB03 004

adapted from William Shakespeare

Link to cast & production team

Link to what the critics said

Link to photo gallery

Sexy, feisty and funny women in scenes from Shakespeare’s history plays

– another Bard in the Yard production by Eastbourne’s award-winning Butterfly Creek Theatre Troupe.

Bard in the Yard has become an annual feature of the Eastbourne summer scene. This year’s show keeps the relaxed atmosphere and simple setting focusing on Shakespeare’s characters and language. Join us for an evening of 12 scenes from Richard II, the Henry plays, and Richard III.


The women range from queens, princesses and duchesses to pub owners, maids and prostitutes. With them you’ll see Henry the Fifth, Falstaff, Richard the Third – and lots of others. Most people will never have seen these scenes before – it’s a truly unique experience.


Eastbourne directors and actors involved are Laurie Atkinson, Fran Baldock, Peter Baldock, Ashley Bloomfield, Chris Cameron, Will Clannachan, Jerry Duckor, Sandra Gillespie, Reuben Hardie, Joanna Hulme, Anne Manchester, John Marwick, Barry Mawer, Florence McFarlane, Rowan McRae, Holly Robinson, Trevor Rose. Merilyn Noonen will be playing the hurdy-gurdy.


Cast & Production Team

1: The Duchess of York

Richard II: Act V Scenes 2 and 3

Duchess of York Sandra Gillespie
Edmund, Duke of York Jerry Duckor
Duke of Aumerle, their son Ashley Bloomfield
Bolingbroke – King Henry IV Reuben Hardie
Director John Marwick


2: Lady Percy – 1

Henry IV Part 1: Act II Scene 3

Henry Percy, known as  Hotspur Chris Cameron
Lady Percy, his wife Holly Robinson
Director Laurie Atkinson


3: Mistress Quickly – 1

Henry IV Part 2: Act II Scene 1

Mistress Quickly Florence McFarlane
Fang Will Clannachan
Snare Jerry Duckor
Sir John Falstaff Barry Mawer
Lord Chief Justice Trevor Rose
Director John Marwick


4: Queen Margaret – 1

Henry VI Part 3: Act I Scenes 1& 4

Henry VI Ashley Bloomfield
Queen Margaret, his wife Fran Baldock
Edward, Prince of Wales, their son Reuben Hardie
Richard, Duke of York Laurie Atkinson
Director John Marwick


5: Lady Percy – 2

Henry IV Part 2: Act II Scene 3

Earl of Northumberland Trevor Rose
Lady Northumberland, his wife Sandra Gillespie
Lady Percy, their daughter-in-law Holly Robinson
Director Jerry Duckor


6: Princess Katherine – 1

Henry V: Act III Scene 4

Princess Katherine of France Joanna Hulme
Alice, her companion Anne Manchester
Director Florence McFarlane


7: Queen Margaret – 2

Henry VI Part 3: Act V Scenes 5

Edward IV, York’s son Will Clannachan
Richard, Duke of Gloucester, York’s son John Marwick
George, Duke of Clarence, York’s son Trevor Rose
Queen Margeret, wife to Henry VI Fran McGrath
Edward, Prince of Wales, her son Reuben Hardie
Director Laurie Atkinson


8: Mistress Quickly – 2

Henry IV Part 2: Act II Scene 4

Mistress Quickly Florence McFarlane
Doll Tearsheet, a whore Rowan McRae
Sir John Falstaff Barry Mawer
Bardulph, his man Chris Cameron
Pistol, his ensign Peter Baldock
Director John Marwick


9: Lady Anne

Richard III: Act I Scene 2

Lady Anne Holly Robinson
Richard, Duke of Gloucester John Marwick
Director Peter Baldock


10: Queen Margaret – 3

Richard III: Act I Scenes 3

Queen Elizabeth Rowan McRae
Lord Rivers, her brother Trevor Rose
Marquis of Dorset, her son Will Clannachan
Lord Stanley, Earl of Derby Chris Cameron
Duke of Buckingham Peter Baldock
Richard Duke of Gloucester John Marwick
Lord Hastings Reuben Hardie
Queen Margaret, widow to Henry VI Fran Baldock
Director Laurie Atkinson


11: Princess Katherine – 2

Henry V: Act V Scene 2

Princess Katherine of France Joanna Hulme
Alice, her companion Anne Manchester
Director Florence McFarlane


12: Mistress Quickly – 2

Henry IV Part 2: Act II Scene 4

Mistress Quickly Florence McFarlane
Doll Tearsheet, a whore Rowan McRae
Bardulph, Falstaff’s  man Chris Cameron
Pistol, Falstaff’s ensign, married Mistress Quickly Peter Baldock
Director John Marwick


Costumes Carol Thompson
Props Julia Stuart
Stage and House Manager House Kate Booth
Programme John Marwick
Publicity board Steve Wilson



What the Critics Said

Beauties, Barmaids and Battleaxes by William Shakespeare

Butterfly Creek Theatre Troupe, February 2003

Reviewed by Ewen Coleman

Although many of the more famous characters from Shakespeare’s plays are men, his women are no less interesting, especially those from his history plays which Butterfly Creek Theatre Troupe have chosen to portray for their Bard In The Yard season this year, Beauties, Barmaids and Battleaxes.

The period is the War of The Roses, the House of York (the White Rose) – the Richard’s and Edward’s – are fighting the House of Lancaster (the Red Rose) – the Henry’s.  In12 short scenes in roughly chronological order we see the role women played supporting their men at war.  In Richard II, The Duchess of York (Sandra Gillespie) intercedes for her son who is accused of treason.  In Henry IV, Lady Percy (Holly Robinson), suspects her husband, Henry Percy of preparing for war only to find later that he is killed in action.  Through the Henry VI and Richard III plays we meet one of Shakespeare’s more interesting women, Queen Margaret (Fran Baldock). She begins by raising an army against those who over threw her husband Henry VI only to lose her son Edward at the Battle of Tewesbury, ending up a bitter and twisted old lady under Richard III’s reign, her famous tirade against him one of the highlights of the production.

To provide some light relief through these scenes, the tavern owner Miss Quickly (Florence McFarlane) and her adversary Falstaff from Henry IV appear, as does Katherine (Joanna Hulme), the French princess showing us how not to learn English.  All the scenes are presented simply with no set and a minimum of props and costumes, the focus of the production on Shakespeare’s words and the interaction of his characters.  Strong performances from all the women in the central roles ably supported by the men makes this production a fascinating and insightful look at a different aspect of Shakespeare.


Photo Gallery
Catherine and Alice Alice Ashley & Fran
The Yorks Pricess Katherine Mistress Quickly & Falstaff
Mistress Quickly Misress Quickly 2 Lord Chief Justice
Dol & Quickly Hotspur and Henry Edward Dies
Duchess York 2 Duchess york

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