All- male Players to stage Bard’s Hamlet
ACCLAIMED Festival Players Theatre Company is touring with a dynamic outdoor production of Hamlet, stopping off at Farnham Castle on Wednesday at 7.30pm.
The experienced company from Gloucestershire joins in this year’s celebrations to mark the 400th anniversary since the death of William Shakespeare.
Presented in full costume, the all- male company brings the excitement of this great thriller: intrigue, ghostly visitations, passion, a play- within- a- play, a gripping duel and humour, in a crystal clear and fast- paced two- hour production.
The Players’ artistic director Michael Dyer has brought the play, the Bard’s longest, to this manageable length in the company’s trademark accessible format.
A small cast of six play multiple roles demanding quick costume changes, as well as performing as singers and musicians. This gives an opportunity for the actors to show their energy and versatility. It will be directed by Worcestershire- based Dyer.
This will be his 12th allmale production running for the Players, and he said. “It is of course totally authentic – we are following in the footsteps of Shakespeare’s own Globe Theatre when all roles were taken by men. The Players have built a reputation for strong, all- male shows over the past 11 years.”
The title role of Hamlet will be played by Benjamin Way, Mark Spriggs will play Claudius, Joel Daffurn will play Laertes, Guildenstern and the First Player, while taking the roles of Polonius, Gravedigger and Second Player is Paul Mills. Dyer will play the small but important part of the Ghost of Hamlet’s Father. Newcomers this year are Lee Peck and Jonny James- Jones. Peck will play Gertrude and Horatio while James- Jones will be playing Ophelia, Rosencrantz and Osric. Music has been specially written by folk star Johnny Coppin.
A barbecue, pizza and bar will be available on the night but the audience need to take chairs or rugs. Tickets cost £ 16 adults and £ 10 for under- 12s, and can be booked at www. thefestivalplayers. co. uk / tour or by calling 01252 721194/ 01252 720400.