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Bank of Hawaii OHANA! Series presents HAMLET at Hawaii Theatre | Arts & Culture

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Bank of Hawaii OHANA! Series presents HAMLET at Hawaii Theatre
Bank of Hawaii OHANA! Series presents HAMLET at Hawaii Theatre

A rollicking band of Elizabethan roustabouts descends on the Hawaii Theatre to bring William Shakespeare’s most famous tragedy of regicide and revenge masterfully to the stage.  The gifted, 21-member Hawaii Theatre Young Actors Ensemble will “hold, as ‘twere the mirror up to nature” to transform their rough-and-ready troupe into the noble characters of Hamlet. Each actor will play two roles – a male player in the itinerant company and his/her character in the play. The challenge will make for a tour-de-force adventure in classical theatre.

There’s a preshow element to the production during which the itinerant players set up their stage, unpack and place the costumes and props they have had with them “on the road,” and improvise in character with their audiences. Who knows what might happen as the Players teach simple Elizabethan pub songs and provoke spontaneous song competitions in the auditorium?

Appropriate for grades 6-12, public performances of Hamlet will be on Friday, April 26 at 7:00 p.m. and Saturday, April 27 at 2:00 p.m. General admission tickets to the public performances are $5, $7 and $10 (including Theatre restoration fee) and are available at the Hawaii Theatre Box Office, 1130 Bethel Street, or by calling 528-0506. Tickets also are available online at hawaiitheatre.com

School matinee performances are scheduled for April 24, 25 and 26. Tickets are $5, and with every 20 student tickets, one teacher gets in free. Call 791-1310 for information and group reservations. Study guides are available for downloading at hawaiitheatre.com

“This year’s Ensemble auditions yielded a bumper crop of amazingly talented, focused young thespians, with a widely varied range of experience,” noted HTC Education Director Eden-Lee Murray, who directs the play. “It has been my job to level the playing field and prepare them for performing Shakespeare with confidence and authority.”

Master story-teller and puppeteer Jeff Gere and guest costume designer Peggy Krock bring an interesting dimension to the story: the Ghost of Hamlet’s murdered father, played by a creepy, super-sized two-part pole puppet that will be operated by several two-member ghost teams.

HTYAE lighting apprentice Hope Laidlaw will assist lighting designer Janine Myers and will run the lights for all of the performances. Original soundscaping for Hamlet has been designed and composed by Dylan Pilger, an HTYAE graduate who also soundscaped last year’s production of Macbeth, in addition to playing the title role. Sets have been designed ‘long distance’ by former Hawaii set designer Bart McGeehon, from his new home with the Dallas Children’s Theatre.

Hawaii Theatre Center’s educational programming is supported by ABC Stores, Bank of Hawaii Foundation, The Bretzlaff Foundation, Samuel N. and Mary Castle Foundation, the City and County of Honolulu, Friends of Hawaii Charities, Thomas J. Long Foundation, Macy’s, McInerny Foundation, RM Towill Foundation, G.N Wilcox Trust, and the State Foundation on Culture and the Arts through appropriations from the Hawaii State Legislature and grants from the National Endowment for the Arts.


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