ED2014 4/5 Reviews ED2014 Theatre Reviews

Hamlet (Secret Theatre)

By | Published on Wednesday 6 August 2014

Adapting Shakespeare’s most acclaimed tragedy must be a daunting prospect: too faithful, you risk stagnation; too radical, you’ll offend the purists. Secret Theatre’s powerful production gets it almost entirely right. The 1960s setting isn’t too intrusive, and the decision to re-imagine Rosencrantz and Guildenstern as women – swinging sixties sex-bombs at that – is inspired, complicating their relationship with Hamlet. The tweaks to Ophelia’s arc are also welcome, as is the company’s ability to seize on the brief moments of levity in the otherwise angst-ridden play. My only minor complaint is regarding the omission of Fortinbras, which makes Hamlet’s transformation feel rather sudden. All of the cast do an excellent job, with the actor playing Hamlet delivering a mesmerising performance.

C too, until 25 Aug.
tw rating 4/5 | [Andrew Leask]