Presented as Bell Shakespeare’s first work of 2020, Shakespeare’s iconic tragedy Hamlet is now showing at the Sydney Opera House. Directed by Artistic Director Peter Evans and featuring a cast of acclaimed Australian actors, Hamlet will be set in 1960s Denmark spotlighting a family torn apart by murder, betrayal and revenge. Multi-award winning Australian actor Lisa McCune will play the role of Gertrude, Hamlet’s mother and the lead role of Hamlet will be played by Harriet Gordon-Anderson.
Gordon-Anderson spoke with City Hub about what it’s been like taking on the role of Hamlet as a woman, saying, “It’s not been difficult to play Hamlet to be honest. I really quickly realised in the rehearsal room that there’s no benefit to me affecting male characteristics. It doesn’t add anything. I don’t think we’re asking the audience to forget that I’m a female actor.”
When working in rehearsals, Harriet shared that it was quickly decided there would be no benefit to changing the gender of Hamlet to a woman within the text, “We concluded pretty quickly that we would be losing a really important element of the text which is Hamlet’s attitude to women as a man.”
Bell Shakespeare are celebrating their 30th anniversary in 2020 and Hamlet was the first production ever produced by the company. Peter Evans said, “We decided to do Hamlet in 2020 because it’s Bell Shakespeare’s 30th anniversary. It was the first work Bell Shakespeare ever staged, and what better time to revisit what is arguably Shakespeare’s most famous play?”
Gordon-Anderson is looking forward to sharing the magic of the piece with audiences, “I think this production is really beautiful. There’s some really beautiful visual poetry. As much as there’s activity to this production there’s also a lot of beauty and a lot of sadness and a lot of empathy.”
Until Apr 4.Sydney Opera House, Bennelong Point,Sydney. $37.50-$97.50+b.f. Tickets & Info: www.sydneyoperahouse.com
By Madison Behringer