The Rogers Revue

The Entertainment Capitol

Shakespeare’s epic history play
 1 Henry IV 
opens the 2019/20 season at Folger Theatre

6 min read

Folger Theatre opens the 2019/20 season with 1 Henry IV, Shakespeare’s richly layered coming-of-age tale of power, rebellion, honor, and redemption. The production is directed by Rosa Joshi (co-founder of Seattle’s upstart crow collectivetheater company in Seattle; Henry V and As You Like Itat Oregon Shakespeare Festival), who makes her DC directorial debut at the Folger.

1 Henry IV is on stage from September 3 through October 13, 2019. Tickets are available online at or by calling the Folger Box Office at (202) 544-7077.

Four-time Helen Hayes Award-winning actor Edward Gero returns to the Folger as the irrepressible, larger-than-life Sir John Falstaff. The production also features Maboud Ebrahimzadeh (last season’s King Johnat Folger Theatre; Round House Theatre’s Oslo)as Blunt and Mortimer; Naomi Jacobson (Folger Theatre’s Richard III) as the Percy family leader Worcester; Kate Eastwood Norris (Macbeth andMary Stuart at the Folger) as the bawdy Mistress Quickly; and Avery Whitted, making his DC theater debut as Prince Hal.

The young Prince Hal spends his days carousing in seedy taverns with criminals and lowly commoners, much to the dismay of his father. Winding from the Boar’s Head Tavern to the shadows of Gad’s Hill, Hal’s path to the throne may be unusual, but it eventually leads him to the one place where questions of honor and reputation come to a head: the battlefield.

“I’m thrilled to be working at the historic Folger Theatre and to be directing in the heart of DC,” says director Rosa Joshi. “I have a deep appreciation for the way Shakespeare’s history plays speak to our times. I’m fascinated by the examination of leadership in these plays and particularly the ways in which the political and the personal are deeply intertwined. 1 Henry IV is filled with intrigue, humor, action, and suspense—with messy people doing messy things under extreme circumstances.”

The 1 Henry IV cast also features Peter Crook as King Henry IV, whose throne is threatened by a rebellious uprising; Tyler Fauntleroy as the ill-tempered Hotspur; Todd Scofield as Westmoreland and Bardolph; and U. Joanathan Toppo as Northumberland and Glendower. Jordan Lee (Lady Mortimer), Maribel Martinez (Lady Percy), Alex Michell (Prince John and Gadshill), Sam Midwood (Peto and Douglas), and Jazmine Stewart (Poins) round out the cast.

The creative team includes scenic design by Sara Ryung Clement (As You Like Itand Vietgoneat Oregon Shakespeare Festival) making her DC debut, costume design by Kathleen Geldard (Folger Theatre’s All’s Well That Ends Well and The Comedy of Errors), and lighting design by Jesse Belsky (The Winter’s Taleand Sense & Sensibilityat Folger Theatre). Movement and choreography for 1 Henry IVis by Alice Gosti (Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s As You Like Itand Henry V). Palmer Hefferan (Woolly Mammoth’s Cherokeeand Women Laughing Alone with Salad) will design the sound and compose original music.

Janet Alexander Griffin, Folger Theatre’s Artistic Producer, says. “Our 2019/20 season is filled with three sumptuous plays featuring larger-than-life, outsized characters, exemplified on full display in 1 Henry IV with Falstaff’s exuberance and lust for life. We are excited to have director Rosa Joshi, who has brought many history plays elegantly to life on stage out west, share her unique vision with DC audiences and lead such an extraordinary cast.”

1 Henry IV is presented with the Folger Shakespeare Library’s exhibition A Monument to Shakespeare: The Architecture of the Folger Shakespeare Library, a revealing look at the architecture of the Folger Shakespeare Library, from its origins in 1932—a gift to the American people from Henry and Emily Folger—to its exciting future. Designed by architect Paul Philippe Cret, in collaboration with the Folgers, the Folger earned a place on the National Register of Historic Places in 1969. This exhibition celebrates the story of an American monument to Shakespeare and its unique architectural features. Currently on display in the Folger’s Great Hall through January 5, for details; free.

Ticketing Information & Performance Dates:          

1 Henry IV is on stage at Folger Theatre from September 3 through October 13, 2019. Tickets are
$42-$85. Discounted preview performances (starting at $25) and special rates for patrons under 30, students, seniors, members and family of the military, educators, and groups may be purchased through the Folger Theatre Box Office at (202) 544-7077 or online at

Related Programming:   

The Pay-What-You-Will performance is on Tuesday, September 3 at 7:30pm. Tickets will be available to the public at 5pm. One ticket per person.

Folger Theatre’s Stage Director Talk is on Thursday, September 5 at 6:30pm. Learn about the creative process, staging, and vision of 1 Henry IV with director Rosa Joshi. $20, includes light fare reception.

College Night is Friday, September 6 at 8pm. Tickets are $15, with a valid student ID. Call the box office at (202) 544-7077 or visit in person to purchase tickets.

Teachers and educators are encouraged to join Folger’s Director of Education Dr. Peggy O’Brien as she shares insights and teaching strategies specific to 1 Henry IVat Folger’s inaugural Teacher Talk on Wednesday, September 11 at 6:30pm. Tickets are $15, with light fare and wine reception following this interactive pre-show workshop. Teachers can purchase $15 discount tickets to the evening’s 7:30pm performance of 1 Henry IV.

A Pre-Performance Talk with Folger Shakespeare Library Director Michael Witmore explores 1 Henry IV within an overview of Shakespeare’s work on Wednesday, September 18 at 6:30pm. Tickets are $20, with light fare included.

Join Dr. Michael Anderegg, professor emeritus of English at the University of North Dakota, as he discusses Orson Welles’ classic exploration of Falstaff in the 1965 film Chimes at Midnightat this Free Folger Fridayon Friday, September 20 at 6:00pm. Dr. Anderegg’s books include Cinematic Shakespeare(2004) and Orson Welles, Shakespeare, and Popular Culture(1999). Free; reservations are requested.

Audience members are encouraged to stay and take part in ourPost-Show Discussion with the cast of  1 Henry IV on Thursday, September 26. This interactive discussion, led by Resident Dramaturg Michele Osherow, will follow the 7:30pm performance.

Folger Theatre’s Brews & Banter Pre-Show Talk will be held onFriday, September 27 at 6:30pm. Before the show, quench your thirst and join this lively small group conversation with select 1 Henry IV cast members. $15 tickets, with craft beer provided by local brewery Bluejacket and light fare included.

Open-Captioned performances, supported by Vinton and Sigrid Cerf, are Sunday, October 6 at 2pm and 7pm.


Please check the Folger website at for a complete listing of special related events.