by William Shakespeare

Performed: Jul 2005

Artwork for Hamlet
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Shakespeare’s dark tragedy is, to some, a ‘vulgar and barbarous drama’; while toothers it has all the ingredients of a steamy airport novel. Indeed, this is a play with sex, jealousy, betrayal, insanity, family conflicts and murder as its key ingredients. At its centre is a young man who has been described as a ‘mad-man’ an ‘introvert’ and the ‘posturing, self-pitying egotistical baby-cum-adolescent in us all …’.

Hamlet is a young man tortured by the same difficulties encountered by many young people – the death of a beloved father; the inability to accept a parent’s choice of partner, confused sexuality and the challenge of finding a path through a world which seems hostile and unsympathetic. Hamlet must face these difficulties within his role as royal prince; his moves are watched, his words analysed. Once he has encountered the tortured ghost of his father, however, all of Hamlet’s demons are released …

Many theatregoers have a vision of what Hamlet, and indeed the play itself, should be. RoughCast’s production concentrates on the claustrophobic struggles of a family in crisis and is a fast-paced, two-hour version intended to make the play accessible and exciting to a wide audience.

Cast

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