Hamlet is one of Shakespeare’s most famous tragedies. It is a play about revenge and anger, telling the story of Hamlet’s anger when his Mother and Uncle hastily marry after the death of his Father.
Whenever I see a Shakespeare production, I’m always impressed by how the company remember their lines. Shakespeare’s English was so different to ours, and it’s almost as if they are speaking a different language. When watching this production, I was even more impressed by this, as it was a student production. Students lead busy lives, with all the essay writing, studying, and socialising we have to do, yet they managed to perfectly learn their lines, not once stumbling with the Shakespearean tongue, despite the many other responsibilities that come with being a university student.
All the actors were convincing in their roles, but the actor who stood out the most to me was the lead role of Hamlet. Hamlet is a complex character, who shows anger, madness and grief, amongst other emotions during the play, and this range of emotions was portrayed very well in the play. The use of humour in scenes where Hamlet is mocking Polonius (Father to Hamlet’s love Ophelia) bought a few moments of lightness into an otherwise dark play.
This production had a modern twist to it, set in a 20th century dictatorship. In my opinion, this modernisation could have been developed more as besides the use of modern costumes (for example, Claudius, Hamlet’s uncle, wore a military style outfit, and the guards wore leather jackets) there was not much reference to the dictatorship. However, I did appreciate the twist and unusual setting, as it made the play feel unique and made it stand out from the many other productions of Hamlet.
By Chloe Rogers