(Lyn Gardner’s article appeared in the Guardian, 7/18.)

Howard Brenton's play begins as it means to swagger on: in teasingly intelligent style. Miranda Raison's Anne walks on to the stage with her own decapitated head in a bag and plays shamelessly to the gallery and our predilection for the gory bits of history. But while this ticklishly enjoyable play may offer previously undreamed of tips on Tudor contraception (some apparently favoured a hare's anus tied around your wrist), this is no horrible history but a seriously enjoyable account of the staunchly Protestant Anne's part as a "conspirator for Christ" who had a role in the making of Protestant England, and whose ghost hovered over the religious schisms that emerged 70 years later during the reign of James I.


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