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Shakespeare on skis

Shakespeare on skis

The glitz and glamour of a 1960s ski resort is brought to life in Stagecraft’s production of Shakespeare’s comedy Much Ado about Nothing, opening 6 May.

Directors Joy Hellyer and Paul Kay say the idea for the ‘60s setting came from a desire to find something glamorous and luxurious.

“The plot line really is fairly decadent,” says Joy. “People have problems of the heart but they don’t have any issues like poverty or illness or anything like that.”

Paul adds they were also inspired by the ‘60s film La Dolce Vita, when the term paparazzi was first introduced.

“The name Much Ado about Nothing is a pun on noting which was pronounced the same way in Shakespeare’s era. Gossiping, spying and overhearing are important elements of the play so we thought it would be fun to re-cast the play’s comic characters as undercover journos. We’ve continued the paparazzi theme throughout the play with press-conferences, screaming fans and photo opportunities,” says Paul.

A special feature of the show is a live band, The Nonny Nonnies. As well as playing music from the era, there are a couple of original compositions by musical director Josh Hopton-Stewart, including a very ‘60s style Hey Nonny Nonny.

And while the original idea to build a ski slope in the theatre hasn’t quite eventuated, there is a skiing scene.

“We’re going for a gorgeous, high style approach,” says Joy. “Think, beehives, Audrey Hepburn and lots of furs”.

“And of course all that sizzling Shakespeare dialogue,” adds Paul.

Much Ado About Nothing opens 6 May at the Gryphon Theatre, Ghuznee Street, and runs until 16 May. Tickets are $25 and $20, or $15 for school students. Book at www.stagecraft.co.nz.

ENDS


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