By: Sarah Zapiain
"Hamlet" has been cast and rehearsal begins in just a few weeks. In anticipation of this upcoming production, I asked the director, Sarah Zapiain, to share some of her thoughts.
What do you think of when you hear, “Hamlet”?
Some people think of school and being forced to read something you didn’t care for in the first place, or writing a paper on Iambic Pentameter. Or maybe you think Shakespeare and see people proclaiming, “Indeed, he doth, mayhaps perchance” and “my Lord saith whosoever thou art” and “doth mother kno thou wearest her drapes?” Middle-aged white men sulking around the stage in tights, talking to a skull may flash through your mind. Or perhaps you see a dusty Shakespearean actor shaking his fist at the sky saying “To BE. or NOT .TO. BE!!?”
But that’s not what I think of. When I think of Hamlet, I see a confused collection of people. I see hopeful young people fresh out of college trying to make sense of the world their parents have given them. I see parents who regret not being there for their children. I see hearts being broken by casual, rash judgments. I see my own mother and father, my own sister and brother, my best friends from college, my teachers and coworkers. This is a play about people and their problems—It’s that simple.
I think the audiences of today are not just ready, but eager to engage in the big questions this play confronts. Things like identity, emotional vulnerability, toxic masculinity, domestic abuse, heartbreak; it’s all in there. After all, Shakespeare was writing for everyone—from the Queen and her court, to the groundlings who could only pay a penny for standing room. This play is for us. All of us. Sons and their fathers, sister and brothers, Mothers, friends, millennials, academics, lovers, fighters, artists and dreamers—this play is about people like us.
Allow yourself to take Hamlet off its lofty pedestal, and I invite you to blow away the dust. You might be surprised how much you already know about this twenty-something everyone’s been talking about.
Hamlet opens October 11 and runs through the 15th, and the 18th through the 22nd. Keep your eyes on our website and Facebook for when tickets go on sale, and for more updates over the course of rehearsals!
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