Shakespeare's most famous tale, Hamlet, is bought to life this summer through a modern retelling by The Raw Shakespeare Project.
For those who don't know Hamlet, a brief summary:
Hamlet is the Prince of Denmark, who has taken leave from university to attend his father's funeral. Before the ceremony, he discovers that his mother has already remarried his uncle - who, despite Hamlet being the sole heir, has been crowned King. That night, Hamlet is visited by his father's ghost, who tells him that his uncle poisoned him, and that his son must 'revenge his most foul and unnatural murder.' Hamlet agrees - but his actions show him continually reluctant to actually fulfil the deed.
Shakespeare crafts a themes of betrayal, deceit, and insanity, into a story that becomes one of his bloodiest tragedies.
Traditionally, it is a man who plays the titular character (famously, Kenneth Branagh), but in The Raw Shakespeare Project's version, Leah Anderson performs the role of Hamlet. Likewise, The Project's interpretation spotlights the tumultuous relationship between Hamlet and his spurned lover, Ophelia (Ellie McPhee) - who is emotionally neglected through Hamlet's single-minded quest for vengeance.
The two actresses interact with the passion, intensity, and pain of the two character's compelling dynamic, allowing a new perspective of the classic tale's primary focus on madness, lies, and revenge.
So who are The Raw Shakespeare Project?
The Project is a performance platform for emerging Adelaide actors to experience and share the works of Shakespeare. They have a rich, year-round program with both large and small productions, in which they take inspiration from a variety of Shakespeare's genres: comedic, tragic, and historical.
The Project has a unique take on Shakespeare: they use traditional set design and costumes, but have a fresh approach in bringing these century-old scripts to life. They aim to make the work accessible to, and enjoyable for, a modern audience. They hope to convert a new group of people to love the tales of Shakespeare.
Their performance of Hamlet is being hosted at McLaren Vale at the Visitor Centre, where the Raw Shakespeare Project will perform a four hour rendition of Hamlet for two nights only. Among the vines of McLaren Vale, the performance will be an outdoor picnic production, and bar facilities will be available on the night so you can taste some of the local wines the region has to offer.
Finishing under the stars, audiences will be enthralled by the performances of Leah and Ellie, and impressed by the talent of the hardworking supporting cast.
When: 7th and 14th of January, 2017.
Where: McLaren Vale Visitor's Centre.
Time: 7pm, picnic ground open 6pm.
Bookings essential: $25 per person and children under 15 free.