SHAKESPEARE IN DOHA
Accidently stumbling on the rehearsal in progress, we heard Austin Tichenor discussing Sigmund Freud's id, ego and superego with his co-star Dan Saski (Saski would later be unrecognisable due to the fact that he is in various dresses for most part of the show; Shakespeare would have been so proud). Even though we knew the nature of the performance we were about to witness, it still felt ridiculously out of place. In retrospect, that was probably the least ridiculous bit, considering that at one point during the play we actually saw miniature animatronic dinosaurs. This is Shakespeare, like you have never seen him before. One stage, three actors, 37 plays (and a small, laminated 3x5 card that somehow contained all the sonnets) and 97 minutes of roaring fun. The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged).
The performance kicks off with the actors each addressing the audience, beginning with the third actor, Tiger Reel. You are shown right away that the fourth wall is non-existent. There is nothing preventing the actors from calling for the houselights and then coming over to pull up one of the audience members to the stage (yes, that happened. Twice. Not even a baby, who was quietly minding his own business and keeping busy with one of his parents' mobile phones, was spared). The interactive element of the show was a nice surprise and the wonderfully spontaneous sense of humour, the three thespians possess, made it especially so. Whether they are playfully berating a flip flop-wearing theatre-goer or quizzing another audience member on her knowledge of Shakespeare, their jokes are spot on.
Tichenor, the veteran of the troupe, has been with the company for 24 years. According to him, Shakespeare has never been irrelevant. No matter what year or