The Bondi Pavilion
Queen Elizabeth Drive. Bondi Beach


6. - 30. May 2009


Phone:    02 9958 8525

Fax:         02 9357 6853


Performance duration approx. 3:00 hours including interval.


Students        $27.00

Teachers        FREE with school groups

Concession    $30.00

Full Price        $36.00



Season details:

6 May - 30 May 2009

scroll down for photos and programme notes.

Director’s Notes:

There are two questions to be asked : (a) ‘Why do we keep doing Shakespeare ?’, & (b) ‘Why do yet another Hamlet ?’

(a)– Apart a genius of magnitude you don’t see at first (like standing with your forehead against the first rock at the base of Everest), Shakespeare is the engineer of modern English, & so of the foundations of anglophone sensibility.

(b)– Hamlet, written almost exactly in the middle of his 20-year career, is the most exuberant, witty & passionately tragic piece of writing I know of.

There are two problems to be solved putting on his plays here & now :

(a)‘How do you translate a cultural context, at once so sophisticated and so barbaric, into an imaginary world which makes immediate sense to an audience today ?’

(b)‘How do you reincarnate the poetry and profundity of the plays ?’ – their elite dimension, if you will – but, just as important – ‘How do you make sense of them as popular plays, here and now’ ? Shakespeare’s plays delighted all classes of understanding and sensibility. They were and are refined and vulgar, conservative and rebelliously carnivalesque. And they don’t need extranious gimmicks to achieve this.

In Hamlet Shakespeare presents, to quote Heiner Müller, ‘the Intellectual in conflict with History’. We try to translate Shakespeare’s clash between bloody feudal tradition, and liberal humanism, into the present conflict between a resurgent European xenophobia & neo-nazism,  & enlightened socialism.

          Programme Notes: