Friday, January 30, 2009
I've had only two rehearsals for Ros and Guil so far, but it is enough to reinforce a belief I have long held about Tom Stoppard. He uses too many words. Yes, I know, a stage actor who dislikes Stoppard? That would be almost as bad as disliking Shakespeare; my peers would never respect me again. So, I will fall a little short of claiming to dislike the playwright whose work I am now rehearsing. Perhaps I will fall in love with his esoteric wordplay as the process continues (but I have doubts. I have already played a much larger Stoppard role, Bernard Nightingale in Arcadia, and the experience failed to win me over). And I admit to being perplexed that I have these negative opinions, as Stoppard's Oscar-winning screenplay for Shakespeare in Love remains a particular favorite of mine. Ah, well. My opinion of Stoppard's wordplay does not matter too much in the case of my current project, as I am not speaking any of his words. As Polonius, I am speaking only Shakespeare's lines (and not many of those). So, I've been thinking more about Hamlet than Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, and as such, present this week's Dance Party. There are lots and lots of Hamlets out there, but this one is probably the one most true to the original spirit of the tragedy. Feel free to sing along.