- the noble King Richard the Lion-Heart, a fugitive in his own land
- the daring and beautiful Lady Marian, who risks her life to save the King’s ransom
- Queen Elinor, pulling the strings in a treacherous game of royal power and political intrigue
- Earl John of Oxford, whose envy of his lion-hearted brother drives him to treason
- Will Scarlock, the outlaw with a rough exterior that hides a wounded heart
- the flim-flam Friar Tuck, who faithfully shepherds his flock—straight to the nearest pub!
- Nature’s nobleman Little John, the truest friend a man could have
- Sir Richard de la Lee, “the good old knight of Wakefield,” whose journey from wealth to ruin and back again is one of the oldest Robin Hood tales of all
- Falconberg, the Sheriff of Nottingham, whose blood-thirsty ambition claims the lives of Robin’s kin
- and, of course, Robin of Locksley himself—“he of the eagle eye and the arrow keen”—who battles both the enemies of the King and the demons of his own troubled soul.
While A Fancyfull Historie of Robin Hood was written by a Chicago playwright in the mid-1990’s, it looks, sounds and acts as if it were written by an English playwright in the mid-1590’s.
In fact, “William Shakspeare's Robin Hood” was its tongue-in-cheek title when it premiered at Chicago Dramatists Workshop in 1995. In that Equity Library Theatre production, Robin Hood was staged with a cast of 14 men and 4 women, but the play’s length and cast size can vary through editing and doubling of roles.
Language, running time, costumes and props are all like those of a typical Shakespearean production. It makes Robin Hood the perfect alternative for Shakespeare festivals, repertory companies and Renaissance faires looking for something new to offer their audiences.
To email an inquiry regarding Robin Hood, click here.
To buy a copy of the script, click here.
More about Robin Hood, Shakespeare — and Greek mythology?
Shakespeare's Life & Times
Renaissance Historians on Robin Hood
— Patti Roberts, Sacramento News & Review (July 2009)
The critics were convinced at Robin Hood’s Chicago premiere:
"ELOQUENT . . . Pursuing persuasive parallels, the author forges links between plucky Robin Hood and rowdy Prince Hal, between rotund Friar Tuck and rascally Falstaff, between intrepid Rosalind and a resourceful Maid Marian. . . . Overall, Robin Hood heartily recalls its great inspiration!”
— Chicago Tribune
“DELICIOUS . . . Robin Hood keeps you on your mental toes to follow the intricacies and delights of a Shakespearean script you’ve never heard before—an almost unimaginable experience for Bardophiles!”
— Plays International
And critics renewed their praise of Robin Hood in its “engaging, high-spirited revival”* at Oak Park Festival Theatre!
“HITS THE BULL’S EYE . . . AND PUTS A SMILE ON THE FACE OF SHAKESPEARE FANS! . . . In another age, Scott Lynch-Giddings might have made a successful counterfeiter. The Chicago actor/playwright’s Robin Hood imitates Shakespeare so skillfully, he might have given the Bard a run for his money. . . . Shakespeare’s spirit echoes throughout the nimbly composed play, with its poetry and pentameter, wordplay and bawdy puns, plot twists and disguises. . . .”
— Barbara Vitello, Chicago Daily Herald*
“I WAS THRILLED TO EXPERIENCE THIS NEW TAKE ON THE LEGEND . . . Robin Hood is written in the style of the Bard, almost as if it were a lost work that’s just been discovered. Lynch-Giddings penned it in the 1990s but the dialogue sounds amazingly like that of the Elizabethan 1590s. Robin Hood is a fast-paced, energetic production inspired by the many versions of the medieval legend, yet it’s never predictable. . . . Director Kevin Theis mounts a dashing two-hour adventure featuring his strong, talented ensemble. . . .”
— Doug Deuchler, Wednesday Journal of Oak Park
“ENCHANTING AND WARM . . . Oak Park Festival Theatre, known for excellent productions of Shakespeare, has mounted an enchanting and warm production of Robin Hood written in Shakespearean-styled verse. Scott Lynch-Giddings has the Bard’s style down nicely in his light-hearted and often funny ode to the tales of the good bandit . . . .”
— Tom Williams, Talk Theatre in Chicago, ChicagoCritic.com
“JUST THE RIGHT BALANCE OF WORDPLAY AND SWORDPLAY . . . smiles and thrills, romance and rough housing . . . . These diverse elements are united . . . by the tone of the articulate and uncluttered text, its lyricism recalling 16th-century verse while always retaining an edge of modern vernacular.”
— Mary Shen Barnidge, Windy City Times
“REMARKABLE! . . . ’Tis pity that Shakespeare never wrote a play about Robin Hood. But despaireth not. . . . The next best thing is Chicago actor Scott Lynch-Giddings’s remarkable Shakespeare imitation . . .”
— Lawrence Bommer, Theater Editor,Chicago Free Press
“HIGHLY RECOMMENDED! . . . An excellent play featuring drama, love, action, history, action, . . . more love, and then some justice for balance. . . . (T)he writing style of the world’s most beloved Bard of the Elizabethan era makes this tale all that more interesting and fun for all Shakespearean devotees.”
— Ed Vincent, Oak Park Journal
Online literary critics and Robin Hood aficionados, too, have been unstinting in their praise:
“FUN, LIGHT-HEARTED, AUTHENTIC . . . A good old-fashioned romp . . . with deliciously Elizabethan language, amusing tongue-in-cheek repartee, and all of the old hallmarks of our favorite tale. . . . Robin Hood is a superior treatment of the Robin Hood myth . . . ."
— Jessica Paige, The Green Man Review
“UNIQUE . . . Robin Hood successfully captures the Elizabethan Bard's style, both in storytelling and dialogue. Plenty of action, romance, humor, heroes, villains and a saucy maid or two!"
— Margaret Carspecken, Shadows of Sherwood
“FASCINATING . . . INTRIGUING . . . . . . Close to Shakespeare in the sheer level of wit and playfulness . . . .”
— Allen W. Wright, Robin Hood - Bold Outlaw of Barnsdale & Sherwood
When Robin Hood premiered at Chicago Dramatists Workshop in 1995, its tongue-in-cheek title was “William Shakspeare’s Robin Hood” (yes, with the ‘e’ missing). The conceit was to create a little mystery about the origin of this play. Displayed in the lobby on a lectern was a timeworn, 145-year-old edition of “Shakspere…