Putting a Face on Theatre
Spent my time in two theatres this weekend, seeing two original shows. They couldn't have been more different. One was an absurdist take on office life, the other a dance-infused piece about the less-than-glamorous road that leads someone into the oldest profession on earth. The completely different natures of the two pieces made think a little more deeply about the techniques a show uses to tell itself. Either show would be lost if it tried to use the other piece's language, or lighting, or costuming. Which got me to thinking: How far can you push a show before it isn't the play it wants to be any more? Shakespeare can handle a lot of interpretations -- modern dress, gender swapping, and more -- and remain Shakespeare. But if you don't say "To be or not to be," it ain't Hamlet. What is the point at which a play stops being itself? And how do you know the line? I'd love to hear your thoughts -- and I'd especially love to know how far you've interpreted Shakespeare, or seen it done. Share your thoughts with me here!