Sexual politics drive Pollard's production of 'Man for All Seasons' 

Before King Henry VIII became a porcine version of his younger self, he was a frisky womanizer who tailored his belief system to suit his own purposes. In the early 16th century, his concerns were twofold: to marry his latest mistress, Anne Boleyn, and to produce male heirs to the throne.

The problem was that the pope, himself politically cornered, would not agree to either an annulment or divorce from his barren Queen Catherine. And clever Anne, unlike his other mistresses, withheld her sexual favors until Henry made her queen, adding urgency to Henry's plans.

This forms the conundrum for Robert Bolt's political play, "A Man for All Seasons," for which The Pollard cast is more than up to handling.

Guest director Shane McClure wisely lets his actors have free rein, although some static pacing accentuated the piece's length and heavy language burden. Michael James' rich costumes and Michael Sullivan's London skyline scene design pull one effortlessly into the historical context.

THE CAST
The ensemble is powerful, with James Hughes leading the cast as a careful and clever Sir Thomas More. Jerome Stevenson is wonderfully wicked as the plotting Cromwell.

Lance Reese and Doug Ford have great presence. Timothy Stewart shows panache as the mercurial Henry, as does Rebecca Wooldridge as More's surprisingly outspoken wife, Alice.

Charming James Ong adds a welcome light touch as the Common Man. "?Linda McDonald

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