Candlelight Productions, in partnership with Mirth Hall Productions, is excited to present a hysterical, fast-paced, and irreverent tribute to ol’ Willy Shakespeare in their upcoming, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged).
The company invite you to join them as three actors attempt to perform all 37 Shakespeare plays (and some sonnets thrown in for good measure) in 97 minutes.
The original piece was first written and performed by Adam Long, Jess Winfield and Daniel Singer in 1987 and revised in 2007. Director Kane Lach explains that he approached the script with a fresh modern era vision to see the piece come alive in a more stylised way however the piece is predominately loyal to the original.
Executive Director of Candlelight Productions, Eugene Wong, adds: “This is a pre-existing script that is actually quite well known and has had rave reviews around the world. Our take on it is to bring a playfulness and innocence to the script, that ironically helps to highlight how bawdy and blood-thirsty Shakespeare’s writing really was. We’ve effectively created a big playground for the actors to strut their stuff and be big kids in, proving that you don’t have to have a major in literature to enjoy The Bard.”
Quite a huge undertaking for three very committed actors, the show features Titus Andronicus as a cooking show, a rap version of Othello, and the entirety of Hamlet presented in less than a minute.
Lach acknowledges that the biggest challenge and most rewarding part of the process was, and continues to be, developing the relationship dynamic between the three actors. Which weave its way through the entire piece. “We did this by exploring different dynamics in regards to status and attitude toward each other and seeing how that effected performances. We kept the gold and let go of the things that were not working.”
As the director, Lach came on to the project only having to cast one character – Trelawny Kean – as both Dave Todman and Shane Henry are Mirth Hall Productions peeps. The duo, along with candlelight, approached Lach to work on the project. “In regards to what I was looking for with the third, I knew I wanted a female energy on the stage, as well as someone that would be comfortable and generate great rapport with the other two cast members,” says Lach.
Candlelight Productions is an arts production company that uses different forms of art to strengthen community and shape culture. Says Wong: “Candlelight Productions is a very different theatre company to most. We use different forms of art (theatre, dance, stand-up comedy, festivals, etc) as a tool for empowering people to be fully who they were made to be, while having a long term impact on our society as a whole – it’s no small task! We’re almost completely volunteer-driven, powered by up to 100 passionate volunteers a year. This is our 14th year of operation, which makes us kind of like grand parents in the indie theatre scene, but it gives us a great wealth of experience and relationships to draw from, and allows us to support up-and-coming companies, such as Mirth Hall Productions.”
“We started with a bunch of friends who really wanted to put on one play, which ended up being incredibly impactful and touring for a month, with invitations to also tour overseas. Since then, we’ve taken it one show/event at a time, but with an initial 20 year vision of how we could help to make a difference in the world around us. And we’re still going, chipping away at it, and planning for the next decade or two as we go.”
“Candlelight likes to choose scripts that are challenging or highly entertaining. When Mirth Hall approached us with the idea to produce this play, I jumped at the idea, because I’ve seen it multiple times around the world, and I love how accessible it makes Shakespeare seem. It’s ultimately just a lot of fast-paced fun. You could barely call it being true to the original scripts – Titus Andronicus has been turned into a cooking demonstration, Othello is a rap and Hamlet has been reduced into a one minute synopsis… and yet, somehow, the main gist of the plays still gets through.”
This parody of the Bard promises to have its audience in stitches. Says Lach: “If you love Shakespeare you’ll like this show, if you hate Shakespeare you’ll love this show!”
Wong agrees and adds ” It’s fun. You’ll laugh. Even the rehearsal process has been hilarious.”
So, go – get a group together and book!
June 8 – 18