(Dominic Cavendish’s article appeared in the Telegraph, 6/23.)
Who will bear the crown? In the teasing opening flourish of Robert Hastie’s revelatory revival of Henry V, Charlotte Cornwell’s kindly, director-like Chorus wanders around the smiling,apprehensive company, kitted out casually as if for a rehearsal, and scrutinises likely candidates – the men stiffening with resolve as she approaches – before turning to the relatively diminutive figure of Michelle Terry.
She could almost be the page-boy with her curly mop of hair, baggy shorts, waistcoat and sneakers – her red lipstick about as un-Laurence Olivier-like as it gets. Yet she’s the anointed one. The casting coronation thus complete, the burden placed on delicate shoulders, we’re off – textually nothing has changed and yet everything has changed.