Happy Birthday, Master Bill!
Photo courtesy of The Weblicist.
Today is William Shakespeare's Birthday! (or so some experts say -- either way, it's still definitely worth celebrating!) ^_^*
The Bard was a big and well-loved part of my college days, and still gives me fond memories of his works on stage. Being a Theater Major back then, your college life just wasn't complete when you didn't go see a Shakespeare play, specially when it was directed my Professor José Estrella.
I really, really loved watching her do Shakespeare because she somehow manages to inject new life into the Bard's works, and I don't just mean Hamlet-in-a-corporate-setting treatment.
She gave Macbeth a whole new face by setting it in the ethnic tribal system of the Bontoc, and it all made perfect sense. Think of Hermione and Leontes playing Tag as an opening scene for The Winter's Tale, Hermione heavy with child. A wheelchair-bound, enfeebled Leontes at the beginning of the second act, shrinking in the dark against a projection of a home-made video of his family, his wife smiling, blowing kisses, waving at the camera.
There were also happy parts she directed. Think of a winsome Perdita, flowers in her hair, making her entrance on a swing lowered from upstage right, and swinging into the audience! Think of Rosalind from As You Like It, getting a boyish make-over set to Cake's Short Skirt, Long Jacket. Florizel being a cute, mild-mannered, nerdy-looking guy in black-rimmed prescription glasses.
Amazing. In my boyfriend's words, Ma'am Jose made Shakespeare awesome sauce. ^_^*
Good times. Real good times.
I now leave you with yet another onstage production whose concept may be as off-kilter awesome. The poster, if you please:
Nope, not a joke, folks. Shakesploitation! Is a real, honest-to-goodness production, and proves to show the Bard is still as bad-ass as he was centuries ago. Fun, no?