Originally published on August 21, 2018 by Ken Marks in The New Yorker (“Goings On About Town”).
David Farr’s 2011 play, THE HEART OF ROBIN HOOD, directed by Suzanne Agins, turns the familiar legend on its feather-hatted head, and is all the more interesting for it. The Sherwood Forest denizen, charismatically played by Benjamin Bonenfant, is a highwayman who robs from the rich and keeps the loot for himself. It takes the influence of the noble Marion (a feisty Robyn Kerr) to inspire a charitable change in the outlaw. Drawing amusingly from influences as diverse as Shakespeare and the Little Rascals, the play contains a number of elements that this summer company is primed to knock out of the park: an arch-villain, Prince John, acted with quiet, insinuating intensity by Sean McNall; Marion’s faithful sidekick, Pierre (Wesley Mann, pulling out all the comedic stops); the clash of steel in some acrobatic sword fights; and a theatrical backdrop perfectly suited to the region’s beautiful natural setting. The production runs in repertory with RICHARD II and THE TAMING OF THE SHREW.