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Hamlet (Ketterer’s Men) @ The Shakespeare Institute, Stratford–upon–Avon

I’ve recently been reading Marvin Carlson’s The Haunted Stage (2001), which deals with a phenomenon in watching and making theatre that Carlson calls "ghosting". This is, effectively, the outer frame which shapes what an audience experiences in the process of attending a theatrical event, the collective resonances carried by actors, buildings, texts, scenery, everything that …

Hamlet (Vital Signs) @ The White Bear Theatre Pub

I was surprised to see such a sparse audience for this, Vital Signs Theatre’s new production of Hamlet at the White Bear. While Hamlets are two-a-penny at the moment, it’s rare to get a chance to see a straight version of the first quarto (Q1). While the programme’s claims that it’s the first time the …

Hamlet The Clown Prince (The Company Theatre) @ Warwick Arts Centre Theatre

Writing about web page http://warwickartscentre.co.uk/events/theatre/hamlet-the-clown-prince This was my third Hamlet in a year with a running time under two hours, which is a trend I’m hugely appreciative of. This time it was a rare UK performance for Mumbai’s Company Theatre, with its brilliant and hugely entertaining take on the play through the medium of clowning. …

Too Many Danes

How many Hamlets can we sit through? In many ways, we’re still in the shadow of the RSC and Donmar "celebrity" productions, more recently joined by the National’s major stab. It’s one of the big institutional shows, and it’s had a good run round the main theatres over the last year and a bit. But …

For the Christmas wishlist

Courtesy of the National Theatre bookshop. You too can pretend you’re part of Team Hamlet at The Mousetrap: Hamlet ‘Villain’ T-shirt £15.00

Kupenga Kwa Hamlet (Two Gents Productions) @ The Oval House, London

Writing about web page http://www.twogentsproductions.com/wordpress/shows/kupenga-kwa-hamlet Kupenga Kwa Hamlet (The Madness of Hamlet) began with Queen Gertred singing Hatina Musha, a traditional Zimbabwean funeral song. It ended with two jolly gravediggers suddenly collapsing, dead. Yet as bleak as this may sound, Two Gents Productions’ take on Hamlet found a warmth and vivacity in its relationship with …

Hamlet (National) @ The Olivier Theatre

Writing about web page http://www.nationaltheatre.org.uk/59866/productions/hamlet.html A lady sitting next to me at yesterday’s matinee commented how nice a change it made to have someone relatively unknown playing Hamlet. Certainly, Rory Kinnear hasn’t made the same mass-media impact yet as David Tennant or Jude Law, but he’s been working his way up, giving stunning performances in …

Prince of Denmark (National) @ The Cottesloe Theatre

Writing about web page http://www.nationaltheatre.org.uk/59868/productions/discover-prince-of-denmark.html As a prelude to the afternoon’s Hamlet in the Olivier, I managed to catch one of the final performances of Michael Lesslie’s new play Prince of Denmark, part of the NT’s "discover:" programme. Aimed at teenagers, the production’s purpose was to provide a bridge for young people coming to the …

Hamlet (RSC Young People’s Shakespeare) @ The Courtyard Theatre

Writing about web page http://www.rsc.org.uk/whats-on/hamlet-yps/ In many ways, this was my ideal Hamlet. Performed on the RSC’s main stage by the current ensemble, yet only costing a tenner and lasting an hour and ten minutes flat, there’s something wonderful about seeing a Hamlet after lunch and still being able to get home in time for …

Hamlet at Elsinore

There’s so much early modern drama going on in the next few months that I’m having to be pretty ruthless with myself about what I’m allowing myself to go to. I’ll be focussing on personal favourites, locals and rare plays: so, plenty of room for the National’s Women Beware Women, the RSC’s Lear, the Globe’s Henry VIII and …