(Jason Zinoman’s article appeared in The New York Times, 9/24.)
The verse play about the final month of Thomas Becket (Godfrey L. Simmons Jr.), the Archbishop of Canterbury, whose power struggle with Henry II, the king of England, led to his assassination in 1170, could easily come off as a dated costume drama. Moving mechanically from one elegant monologue to another, the play is organized like a series of arguments. Becket is visited by four tempters, who, in this production presented by the Church of St. Joseph and the nonprofit Brooklyn Arts HQ, arrive in business suits and, standing on a tall platform, are rolled down the church’s long center aisle.
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