Dance Fight: Battle Choreography in Arkansas Rep’s Henry V


Watch as Fight Director D.C. Wright explains how stage combat is planned and rehearsed for maximum impact with minimum injury. 



Stage combat is risky business. One wrong move, and serious injury could result. That’s why professional Fight Directors are in charge of staging fight scenes that are visually thrilling, while maintaining safety for all actors involved. The choreography is approached much like a dance sequence. Except in this case, the dancers are trying to kill each other.

Fight scenes are planned and then first rehearsed with wooden poles at half speed. Once the actors become trained in the sequences, they move up to using stage weapons. While not razor sharp, the swords, axes and spears you’ll see in the battle scenes at Henry V are replica weapons and could cause major injury if not handled properly. Cast members rehearse fight scenes before every performance to maintain form and precision.

Watch the dramatic battle of Agincourt live on stage. Advance Tickets to Henry V are on sale until Friday.

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