Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 

The Bacchanals present - HAMLET @ Zeal


The Bacchanals present
HAMLET



Wellington-based theatre company The Bacchanals will be performing Shakespeare’s most famous play in an unlikely venue during February and March as part of the 2002 Fringe Festival. The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark will be staged ZEAL located on Victoria Street opposite the library and central police station.

Carey Smith, whose previous roles with The Bacchanals have included Iago in Othello and the lead roles in Wealth and Hellbeing and The Jew of Malta, leads an international company of actors (for international read one American, one Canadian and a bunch of NZers!) including Bacchanals stalwarts Eve Middleton as Gertrude, Tina Helm as Ophelia, James Stewart as the Ghost and John Porter as Claudius. Only one play might seem like a step down from The Bacchanals’ mammoth trilogy of The Jew of Malta, Titus Andronicus and Volpone in August 2001, but every indication is that Hamlet will be their most ambitious project to date.


“Initially a revival of a three and a half hour long, 400-year old play with a huge cast might seem at odds with the traditional perceived image of Fringe, which is small cast-new work-under an hour,” says director David Lawrence. “But in most parts of the world ‘Fringe’ is a geographical rather than stylistic term. In London a Fringe venue is simply any theatre that isn’t in the West End. And in the Edinburgh Fringe there are almost as many productions of Shakespeare, Chekhov and Ibsen running as there are plays by new writers.” By this definition then, could one say that Wellington’s leading Fringe venue is not Bats but Circa Theatre, since every other theatre in town is situated on Courtney Place while Circa is out on the fringe of the city?

Rather than a fixed staging, The Bacchanals’ Hamlet will be a promenade production in the style of Jacqui Coats’ production of Martin Sherman’s Bent (Phoenix, 1997), David O’Donnell & Bronwyn Tweddle’s Coriolanus (Adam Art Gallery, 2001) and David Lawrence’s own production of The Mysteries (Studio 77, 1996). With five areas within the vast venue of ZEAL representing the different physical spaces of the play, the audience will be taken on a literal journey through the world of the play. “In every Bacchanals production we’ve tried to break down the invisible fourth wall and speak to the audience rather than at them,” says David. “In a promenade staging the audiences’ involvement becomes absolute.”


This will be the third time in two years that The Bacchanals have grappled with the world’s greatest playwright. Their October 2000 production of Othello with Taika Cohen in the title role got “everything that matters right” (Dominion) and showed a “thoroughly intelligent understanding” (NBR) of Shakespeare’s play. Their production of
Titus Andronicus, said the Dominion’s Timothy O’Brien, “would be worth seeing at five times the price”.
Hamlet, while remaining faithful to The Bacchanals’ commitment to textual fidelity, may contain a few surprises for those who think they know Shakespeare’s play – or how The Bacchanals always do Shakespeare.


Hamlet runs at ZEAL, 50 Victoria St, from Tuesday 19 February to Wednesday 13 March. There are no performances Thursdays or Fridays. Performances are at 7pm in the evenings and 2pm on Sunday afternoons. The production will run for approximately three hours thirty minutes.


All tickets are $11 ($10 for Fringe card holders) and can be booked through TICKETEK (04 384-34840 – transaction fee may apply).

A limited number of tickets for each performance are also available by emailing thebacchanals@paradise.net.nz. Further information on the production can be attained via this email address or by phoning (04) 386-3615

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

Howard Davis Review: From Free Press to Fancy Dress - Spielberg's The Post

Stephen Spielberg's The Post is an opportune newsroom drama in which a corrupt Republican president wages war against the "liberal media," as its plucky proprietor risks economic and legal ruin to bring the Pentagon Papers to public light. Its true protagonist is publisher Katharine Graham, a stringently diplomatic businesswoman, reluctantly compelled to take an overtly political stance in the interests of democracy and freedom of the press. More>>



Howard Davis Review: The Black Dog of Empire - Joe Wright's Darkest Hour'

On the eve of England's contorted efforts to negotiate its ignominious retreat from Europe and the chaotic spectacle of the Tory party ratifying its undignified departure from a union originally designed to prevent another World War, there has been a renewed appetite for movies about 1940. More>>



Howard Davis Review: Anger Begets Anger - Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri

For fans of what Ricky Gervais termed "number movies" (Seven Samurai, The Magnificent Seven, Ocean's 11, Se7en), Martin McDonagh's latest offering will be a welcome addition to the roster. The Irish playwright turned screenwriter and director has produced another quirky and darkly comic tragedy that evolves around the futility of anger and grief, retribution and revenge. More>>

Howard Davis: Sexting in George Dawe's Genevieve - Part I

Te Papa's permanent collection includes an enormous oil painting by the English artist George Dawe called Genevieve (from by a poem by S.T. Coleridge entitled 'Love') that was prominently featured in the 2013 exhibition Angels & Aristocrats. Compare the massive immensity of the bard's gorgeously gilded harp with the stubby metallic handle of the Dark Knight's falchion, both suggestively positioned at crotch-level. Dawe's enormous canvas invokes a whole history of blushing that pivots around a direct connection to sexual arousal. More>>

ALSO:

Ethnomusicology: Malian ‘Desert Blues’ Revolutionaries To Storm WOMAD

Malian band Tinariwen (playing WOMAD NZ in March 2018) are a true musical revolutionaries in every sense. Active since 1982, these nomadic Tuareg or ‘Kel Tamashek’ (speakers of Tamashek) electric guitar legends revolutionised a traditional style to give birth to a new genre often called ‘desert blues’. They also have a history rooted deeply in revolution and fighting for the rights of their nomadic Tamashek speaking culture and people. More>>

Gordon Campbell: Best New Music Of 2017

Any ‘best of list’ has to be an exercise in wishful thinking, given the splintering of everyone’s listening habits... But maybe… it could be time for the re-discovery of the lost art of listening to an entire album, all the way through. Just putting that idea out there. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION
 
 
  • Wellington
  • Christchurch
  • Auckland