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Austin Pendleton Adapts and Directs Wars of the Roses: Henry VI & Richard III

The Tony Award nominee will focus on Shakespeare's greatest villain in his upcoming adaptation.

Matt de Rogatis will portray the infamous Richard III in the upcoming adaptation of Shakespeare's play.
(© Chris Loupos)

Austin Pendleton directs and adapts a new stage version of Richard III, William Shakespeare's greatest villain, in Wars of the Roses: Henry VI & Richard III, which begins performances August 1 at the 124 Bank Street Theatre. The play combines texts from Shakespeare's Henry VI, Part 3 and Richard III to create a version that has never been seen before. The production stars Pendleton as Henry VI and Matt de Rogatis as Richard III. The opening is set for Saturday, August 4, at 7pm and will play a limited engagement through August 19.

With the two texts combined, Pendleton's Wars of the Roses: Henry VI & Richard III explains how Richard III evolved into a tyrant. "What's always fascinated me about Richard III," said Pendleton, "is how he came to be the way that Shakespeare so brilliantly portrays him in the play named after him. I believe the answer to all of this is clearly dramatized by Shakespeare in Henry VI, Part 3, the play that leads up to Richard III."

Joining Pendleton and de Rogatis in the cast are Jim Broaddus, John Constantine, Milton Elliott, Debra Lass, Johanna Leister, Rachel Marcus, Pete McElligott, John L. Payne, Kathleen Peirce, Greg Pragel, and Michael Villastrigo. Steven Wolf will design the lighting, and Project Runway's Maya Luz will be costume consultant.