If Dr Evil was young Danish Royalty: Barbadians treated to Shakespeare alive as Globe Theatre’s 45th destination in special tribute
Procrastination and indecision were the major downfalls for Hamlet, but not before coining major phrases used to abuse centuries later… “Though this be madness – yet there is method in it,” or “Neither a borrower nor a lender be,” and what about “There’s the rub“? How thrilling to learn their origins anew at the Barbados Museum when the Globe Theatre made Barbados their 45th stop in a 200-plus whistle-stop tribute of rendering Billy Shakespeare’s the Prince of Denmark, they soon return to brisk European climes, with the tropical Caribbean memories but to warm them.
The multinational troupe’s clever usage for set design was genius bordering on MacGyver – where trunks and planks would at one moment provide the play within the play; then a graveside for Ophelia or the parapets of Hamlet’s castle. With travelling kept to essential components – doubling of characters was artfully doubled as per Cloud Atlas style, e.g. Keith Bartlett was both the ghost of Hamlet’s father and his own brother Claudius; while Polonius and Ophelia’s gravedigger were handled with equal aplomb by John Dougall; Ophelia herself as done by Phoebe Fildes also played instruments for the enhancement of scenes (never thought of eerie music as a violin’s bow drawn on a cymbal’s edge, damn crafty indeed).
The costumes were steampunk in the sense they were a mixture of Elizabethan doublets with large stitching mixed with Victorian garb to create a sense of past, yet enabling swift changes from scene to scene, all the more necessary if the troupe were doubling roles as just recounted…
While it was truly sad how Corporate Barbados was not forthcoming to sponsor and assist in defraying expenses to then reduce the Box Office so all Bajans could appreciate for such a brief and magnificent education on English, the intricacies of Language as well as understanding the slings and arrows of Psychology… Yet it was money well spent, regardless the cost!
The Globe Theatre initiated a 2 year global tour of Hamlet aimed at taking in every country in the world. The “Globe to Globe Hamlet,” directed by the Globe’s Artistic Director Dominic Dromgoole, is a completely unprecedented theatrical adventure.
The company’s goal is traversing all 205 nations in the world to stage Hamlet in a huge range of unique and atmospheric venues, from village squares to national theatres, from palaces to beaches. Travelling by boat, sleeper train, jeep, tall ship, bus & aeroplane across 7 continents…