We envision a Delaware where people from all walks of life celebrate and explore their shared humanity through the lens of Shakespearean works.
If you’d like to explore some of the human questions at the center of HENRY V, we offer up the following questions to spark conversation on your car ride home or in the days following your attendance at the Summer Festival.
As the play begins, King Henry is a new ruler looking to prove his leadership capabilities. Do you consider yourself a leader? Have you ever been placed in a position where you’ve had to prove yourself as being worthy of the role assigned to you? How did you go about proving yourself? How did you react when challenged? Did you see any similarities between Henry’s experiences and your own?
What leadership qualities does Henry express that you’d wish to see in our political leaders? What leadership qualities does Henry express that might be out of place in a contemporary setting?
Besides Henry, what other characters in the play express leadership qualities? What kind of leadership qualities, if any, are expressed by the choruses (the group speeches that set the scenes)?
AGAINST-ALL-ODDS VICTORY STORY
The English victory over the French at the Battle of Agincourt has become a template for contemporary underdog stories? Based upon Shakespeare’s dramatization of the events, what do you think enables the English to pull of their incredible victory?
Have you ever achieved an against-all-odds victory? What enabled you to achieve your success? How did you feel after the accomplishment? Do you see any similarities between how you achieved your victory and how Henry and his troops achieved their’s?
In Elizabethan England, it was illegal for dramatists to put contemporary political figures on stage. History plays, like Henry V, were often used to make commentary on contemporary events. Do you see any resonances between situations in Henry V and events in our world?