One particularly compelling throughline in Shakespeare’s history plays is the maturation of Henry V. When does he morph from the prank-loving, bawdy-house-frequenting Prince Hal into the sage, shrewd, continent-conquering King Henry? Judging from Evan Cabnet’s crisp but thematically questionable production of Henry V, featuring all 13 members of this year’s acting Chautauqua Theater Company Conservatory, that crucial day has yet to arrive.
My mistake. I initially assumed that the Chautauqua Opera production of Macbeth would be in Norton Hall, a natural setting for this midsize masterpiece of Verdi’s early maturity. Only on my arrival did I realize that it was booked as a one-off in the Amphitheater. Could Macbeth really fill the space à la Aida?