It isn't often that local audiences get the chance to spend extended periods of time in the company of actors capable of commanding any stage in the English-speaking world. This past fall, though, Royal Shakespearean Greg Hicks treated Denver to a nine-hour-long display of consummate skill. Hicks led the Tantalus company with superb portrayals, captivating the audience's attention from his first entrance, tightening his grip during moments of dry humor, descending into agony and rising magisterial with the slightest inflection or shift in posture. Perched on stilts and balancing canes and done up in a headdress that seemed inspired by the Dr. Who television series, Hicks gave a rendering of the lecherous Priam that nearly stole the show. And as Agamemnon, Hicks revealed a man marooned between the twin towers of pride and necessity. It was a virtuoso, standard-setting performance that, one hopes, we'll soon see the likes of again.