Beginning on Friday, October 4, Bellarmine University’s theatre program
will stage three performances of unrehearsed Shakespeare.
The audience won't know which Shakespearean work will be performed until the day of the show, although the director has hinted that it's likely to be a comedy.
Unrehearsed Shakespeare is “a method of Shakespearean stage production that seeks to emulate original practices,” said Dr. Zackary Ross, assistant professor of theatre, who is directing the shows. “The actors only learned the name of the play we will produce -- and their role in that play -- about a week
prior to the performance so that they could prepare -- but not rehearse -- their role.”
While the actors will not rehearse, they will not be completely unprepared when show time arrives. “The 14 actors cast in the production have trained in various Shakespearean acting strategies including working with meter and rhetoric, playing imagery,
clowning, stage combat, and various other workshops geared at honing skills useful to a Shakespearean actor,” said Ross.
The actors will be given their lines and a few cue words prior to performing the play. They will not be allowed to rehearse lines ahead of time, nor will they meet with their fellow actors to practice, until performance day.
“Opening night, October 4, will be the first time they all gather in the same room to work on the script, live in front of a paying audience,” said Ross.
Tickets are $10 for general admission and $7 for students, seniors or groups of five or more. The shows take place on October 4 and 5 at 7 p.m., as well as on October 6 at 2 p.m.
Article by Bilal Qazi, intern in Bellarmine's Office of Enrollment, Marketing and Communication