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Jordan Heron - The Vanity Card Series

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Live entertainment, especially live theatre, has an intrinsic value to me. Even mediocre live entertainment has a benefit over the best movie made - real people.

I once said that there was no such thing as bad live theatre. Some were better than others, no doubt. The quality of the writing, directing, let alone acting, gives live theatre a broad range of quality. But it's still live. At some point, I finally admitted that there WAS such a thing as bad live theatre. But I'm not writing about that today. Really.

My daughter, Trista, takes part in community theatre. It's an outlet from the frustration of every day life - and there's the dream of being discovered and taken away to the fairytale world of money and fame. But mostly, is just about having some fun.

Last Friday, I went to a production of Hamlet, by a community troupe that does a lot of Shakespeare. The costuming looked like it came from Music Man, but that's what the troupe has, so that's what they use. Adult males are hard to come by in local theatre, so Rozencrantz and Gildenstern were both female. So was Horatio, played by my daughter, as it happens. I have no problem with this - you adapt to what you have, and you make some subtle changes in the dialogue. It works. Mostly.

However, I really had to take exception to Hamlet's father, the ex-King of Denmark, appearing only as an apparition in the play. Hamlet's father would be a guy. A male. In my mind, no real debate here. And, much as I tried to do the "suspension of disbelief" thing, the young woman playing this male role was, at an estimation, a 42-C. And with quite a shrill voice, especially when screaming lines into a microphone. It was really hard to get past that.

My favourite was when the dead King seemed to ask her, I mean his, surviving son to revenge the poultry.


It's all in the phrasing...

09 December 2009

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