So, I wanted to talk to you about Hamlet. But sometimes it's hard to figure out how to get you excited about something I know you've been forced to read in high school. Our teachers, bless them, select potent masterpieces of literature for us, and, in so doing, sometimes accidentally murder the thrill we would have gotten from the thing had we discovered it ourselves. Such is life.
Here's the thing, though: plays live. They're not meant to be read off the page by one person sitting quietly in English class. They're meant to have breath and color and texture and bodies and sounds and (sometimes, if you're close enough) smells. If you're someone who's been forced to read plays in school and have therefore come to the conclusion that plays are boring death, I can't blame you. But before you write them off altogether, just do me this one favor, would you? See Hamlet.
Because there's a reason. There's a reason your teacher--who probably honestly, passionately loves literature, by the way, though "passionate" may not the first word you would reach for to describe her--there's a reason she made you read Hamlet. There's a reason everybody's heard the words "To be or not to be." There's a reason people have been doing this play over and over and over again for four-hundred years. There is a reason. And you should find it out. That's all.
Nope, one more thing: Darragh Kennan, who's playing Hamlet this time around, totally rocks. Okay, that's all.
Seattle Shakespeare Company
Through December 5