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Theatre > History: Pre-Modern

Heavy Metal Hamlet

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Heavy Metal Hamlet


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DVD Price $200
Streaming Price (1 year) $200
Streaming Price (1 year) + DVD $300
Streaming Price (3 years) $480
Streaming Price (3 years) + DVD $580

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Director's Notes

It is said that Hamlet is a play that most encapsulates the existential dilemma of the 20th century. In behaviour veering between levity and solemnity; savagery and courtesy; irony and pathos; Hamlet reveals to us, in a series of images, the hysteria of his emotions. In this unsettled world the Chorus as conduits to the other characters in Hamlet's dream/nightmare flesh out the narrative.

After learning the terrible secret contained in the Ghost's utterances and with exhortations to revenge seared into his memory Hamlet struggles with his own overwhelming inaction. Whether Hamlet is mad or not is irrelevant, but his despair is genuine and believable. Hamlet constantly questions life itself and its relevance. It is this behaviour, with its seesawing emotions and changes of heart that dominate this series of scenes and vignettes that comprise this new look at Hamlet. Hamlet questions everyone that he encounters like an interrogator, those he does not question he accuses, those he does not accuse he welcomes, full of contradictions.

Hamlet is placed at the centre of the maelstrom and Ophelia, Gertrude, Claudius and all the other players circle around him. As Hamlet floats on the waves they swim within them. Hamlet is elevated from the other players and deals with the world from his aerie, disconnected and disaffected. The song 'Paranoid' outlines Hamlet's interior state and all the music, chosen from the late 60's provides a sound bridge into the psyche of the historical Prince who could not make up his mind.

Following a career as dancer on television and in commercial productions Jacqui Carroll performed with the Sydney Dance Company under the direction of Jaap Flier dancing roles such as Columbine in Glen Tetley’s Pierrot Lunaire, in Tetley’s Circles as well as in works by choreographers Anna Sokolow Lyric Suite and Deserts, Jaap Flier Hi-Kyu and Four Stages and John Butler Carmina Burana, among others. As choreographer Carroll has created works for Australian Dance Theatre,The Lotos Eaters and Missing Film, Queensland Ballet Persephone, Carmina Burana, A Christmas Carol (2 acts), Scheherazade, Firebird,Transfigured Night, Four Seasons, Othello, The Australian Ballet Canzona and West Australian Ballet Stabat Mater, Night of the Full Moon. After witnessing the training and aesthetic of Japanese theatre director, Tadashi Suzuki, Carroll was inspired to develop theatre works combining text, movement and music. She is the co-founder, with John Nobbs of the performance ensemble OzFrank Theatre for which she has created numerous works. Following her creation of the 3 act ballet,TheTempest for the Queensland Ballet in the mid-1990s she has concentrated on developing theatre that includes such movement-inspired works as The Romance of Orpheus, Doll Seventeen, Up Jumped the Devil, Motel of Memory and Brie ngs for a Descent into Hell. Jacqui is currently choreographing and producing a full-length dance lm with a mixed company of young and mature dancers. Her professional dance teaching credits include Head of Dance Dept. Centre for the Performing Arts,Adelaide, plus the Australian Ballet, West Australian Ballet, Queensland Ballet.

"Reaching beyond the boundaries of accepted rubrics of dance or plays, Heavy Metal Hamlet is capped by a careful choice of text distilled form Shakespeare's drama and Carroll's choreography. It's patterns of stiff movement, delivered with increasing fluidity by Frank players, resonate with an unearthly otherness. [As musical director] Guy Webster has created a thoughtful marriage of Nobbs's brilliant vision linking Hamlet's predicament with reflections from Black Sabbath." - The Courier Mail 1998

"…Forget that four hour long film version, this production of Hamlet is brilliantly executed, collaborated with the highest wit…A well choreographed, well thought out play that provides clever new insights into the characters…The scenes are alternately fantastic and simple giving the audience a more emphatic narrative to accompany Shakespeare's heavy dialogue." - Time Off Magazine 1998

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