Shakespeare in the suburbs

After my visit to Stratford-Upon-Avon in England last year I was inspired to see Shakespeare and it reminded me of how much I loved various Shakespeare plays in high school (Thanks to Mr Bob Phillips from Temple Christian College for the introduction).

In July 2013 I booked 1 ticket to see The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged) on a Wednesday morning 31.7.13 at 11.00 am at the Hogood Theatre in Ramsay Place at Noarlunga Centre.

Complete works

Entering the theatre foyer I could see the audience was mostly made up of seniors and students.  I wasn’t sure what to expect and sat down in the third row only to be shuffled along by a guy in his 20’s as I was in his seat.  The lights dimmed and the first actor took to the stage starting with a bit of audience interaction.  Who has seen this play and that play by Shakespeare?  The guy next to me was the only one who had seen them all in the whole theatre and he was asked up onto the stage.

This fellow then began reciting lines of the Merchant of Venice and it turned out he was one of the 3 actors (Damian Callinan, Nick English, Tim Overton) carrying us swiftly through all of Shakespeare’s works.  With a modern, cheeky take and some modified language we romped across all 37 of Shakespeare’s play represented in some way shape or form albeit briefly from (you guessed it) Romeo and Juliet to Hamlet.

I wondered what people were thinking, especially if they were expecting traditional Shakespeare and these guys did a hilarious, bold, clever take where they had me laughing and blushing the whole time, particularly in relation to the position of the peacock.  Such a fabulous performance and highly recommended!

When I saw the Comedy of Errors advertised again at the Hopgood Theatre I thought I must get a ticket as I enjoyed the last performance so much.  This time it was an evening show, ticket for 1 at 7.30 pm on 10.9.13.  A collaboration between Bell Shakespeare and the State Theatre Company of SA this is a tale of two identical twin brothers, separated at birth and then the funny and naughty circumstances they find themselves in as they bump into each other, their family and connections in a major city.comedy of errors washing machine

Whilst the characters and costumes were very modern, the language was mostly Shakespearian and I always find that we you see it in real life, it all makes a lot more sense.  I wonder what something like Facebook would have done to this play with check ins, however it just goes to show that fate, destiny and 1.5 degrees of separation were themes in Shakespeare’s day.  I loved the staging, the music, the costumes and the quick wit in this play and if it comes to somewhere near you – you MUST go and see it!


Written by Wendy Perry, 13 October 2013.

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