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Girls Rule In SETSCO’s Raucous Production Of ‘Henry IV’

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Michael Spooneybarger/ CREO
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The Southeastern Teen Shakespeare Company, or SETSCO,  will perform Henry IV Part 1 April 28 through May 1 at the Pensacola Opera Center.

Set in a post-apocalyptic world ruled by a matriarchy, the action in Shakespeare’s “Henry IV Part 1” as staged by SETSCO, moves back and forth between a lot of devilish escapades and a central fight for power.
“It’s a fun play… the world has been wiped out  ... and the girls are in charge,” said director Michelle Hancock. “They’re going to be wearing leather, and they’re going to be listening to punk. They’re going to be having sword fights and stick fights and playing jokes on each other…they’re going to be rebelling against the parents and rebelling against the king. The play is about rebellion.”
The 13-member cast ranges in age from 12 to 19 and includes a mix of first-time players and seasoned actors. Katie Frierson, 16, of Milton plays King Henry.
“I like the complexity of Shakespeare, and I like the fact that because of the way we have set the play we get to take these familiar characters and make them our own,” Frierson said.
The company puts on the play April 28 through 30 and May 1 at 7:30 p.m. at the Pensacola Opera Center. Tickets cost $15.   
SETSCO was founded in 2005, and Michelle Hancock has been director since 2008. The company has performed at renaissance fairs in Mobile and Pensacola, the Great Gulfcoast Arts Festival, the University of West Florida’s Festival on the Green, the Gulf Breeze Arts Festival as well as at other events and venues.
This article is part of a collaboration between WUWF and the UWF Center for Research and Economic Opportunity.