This week we are off to see Hamlet. And I will happily say I was looking forward to this most of the year, as I have not seen Shakespeare performed live since I was a teenager.
That is, until I started watching video and interviews online with the director of this particular production.
How do you feel about Shakespeare taken out of it’s original setting and tossed into modern times? I do not mean like the movie 10 Things I Hate About You (based on Shakespeare’s Taming of the Shrew and is one of my favourite teen movies).
It amuses me the director states in one interview that it would be an anomaly to perform the play in it’s original setting, so she brought it forward into modern times. I would think people in modern dress speaking the language the play was written in to be more the anomaly. Not to mention she’s turned the play within a play into a musical.
I had such high hopes, as I’ve never seen Hamlet performed before, but I have come to the conclusion I need to go into this with very, very low expectations.
The themes and stories are timeless because they resonate today, but that does not mean you have to take it all and put it into modern day. I would have rather seen the play performed in it’s proper setting, rather then here and now. It is safe to say I’ll be very critical about attending next year and making sure this person is not directing (although last year they did something similar to this as well, which is why I passed on going). What is next? Will they do a production of Richard II set during Woodstock?
As my sister stated when I broke the news of what I had discovered to her ‘Is there a pub nearby? You know, in case it is so bad we have to leave for a drink?’