Campus Event Assignment–Reduced Shakespeare Company–Natalie Zhu

This is a post about a long ago event that took place on campus on 13th September, the Reduced Shakespeare Company. 

Generally speaking, I was amazed by their performance. I always consider Shakespeare plays to be very serious literature, since they weigh so much in history. However, Reduced Shakespeare Company changed my mind. They proved two things: a) Shakespeare is not that serious, and his plays are indeed written for the mass; b) the effect of cross-dressing actors really reflected the theatre back in Shakespearean time.

The part I loved most was in Hamlet, when the three actors invited audience to act our Ophelia’s mind. There was one audience as Ophelia herself, whose duty was to scream really hard after Hamlet said “get thee to a nunnery!” Another audience needed to run across the stage, showing that she was panicking. Then, there were two rows of audience as the unconscious part of Ophelia, waving their hands in the air out of no reason. The rest of the audience were all the superego of Ophelia, which were divided into three parts: the masculinity part, the maternal part, and the modern part, which shouted out different words at the same time. Thus, when all of these were combined, the hall was in absolute chaos, but the complicated mind of Ophelia was almost perfectly presented—we could see her screaming, running, shouting, thoughts conflicting.

Leave a Reply