Oxford Hamlet

Oscar Wilde once asked whether the critics of Hamlet were really mad or only pretending to be. The same might be asked of this zany, wayward production of the Bard’s great tragedy. I have seen several other productions lately, (including the outstanding one at Stratford with David Tennant and Patrick Stewart). Creation Theatre’s approach is as far as possible from that. In the unconventional atmosphere of Blackwells’ bookshop, using actors from the Factory company, they offered an anarchic, creative, unfinished, audience-participation Hamlet that resembled a rehearsal and deliberately drew attention all the time to its own artificiality and make-believe. The idea of the director Tim Carroll was to ask the audience to bring props each night, forcing the actors to improvise, and to swop roles so that no two performances would be the same. At times the result was as farcical as the skits done by the Reduced Shakespeare Company with their celebrated Complete Works of Shakespeare in One Evening show. Yet this not a send-up; somehow despite all the oddities and deliberate irreverence we also came away feeling we had glimpsed a genuine production of Hamlet. http://www.oxfordprospect.co.uk/Hamlet-by-the-Creation-Theatre-Company.html


3 thoughts on “Oxford Hamlet

  1. Another production I have missed, but unlucky enough to go and see the Noel Coward at the Playhouse last Saturday, must have been his worst play.
    Hope all is going well.
    Best wishes

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