The company will present Hamlet The Comedy at Markeaton Craft Village, Derby from July 14-16 and at The Coach House, Lea, Matlock, on July 21.
In Oddsocks version of Shakespeare’s play, the eponymous royal student has returned home for the summer holidays to find something rotten in the state of Denmark and it’s more than just the bag of dirty washing!
Mum’s married Uncle Claudius and Dad’s dishing the dirt from his grave – it’s enough to make a teenager mad! Things will never be the same again in the Hamlet household.
Creative producer Elli Mackenzie explains how Oddsocks manages to make the play unique and funny without altering the original text and plot beyond recognition. “Hamlet is a story for today,” she said. “It is about a young person whose world has suddenly shifted a hundred and eighty degrees by circumstances beyond their control. Young Hamlet is struggling with responsibility, grief and growing up in a changing world and needs to make decisions about how to move forward.
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"We work with an experienced and multi-skilled cast to bring out any comic potential the situations their characters find themselves in. When the actors express the true meaning of the words being spoken and at the same time react truthfully to the comic situation their character finds themself in it serves to heighten the text’s meaning focus the attention to what is happening for the characters. This is never more important than when playing to a large audience in the open air, subtlety is lost when competing for attention with forces beyond our control: Wind, rain, heat, passing airplanes and birds. The most important thing is that the audience have a fun, entertaining and memorable experience and as a company we love to deliver that in a different way each summer. There are lots of outdoor Shakespeare productions, but only one Oddsocks version”.
Oddsocks founders Elli Mackenzie and Andy Burrows will both be treading the boards in Hamlet The Comedy. Elie will play Hamlet’s mother Gertrude and Hamlet’s best friend Horatio. Andy will play Hamlet’s dead dad and his live uncle.
New to Oddsocks this summer is Theo Toksvig-Stewart who is playing the Prince of Denmark.
Also making her Oddsock debut is Amber Lickerish, an actor, storyteller and poet who is usually based in London.
Jack Herauville is making a return to Oddsocks this summer, having trod the boards with the company in The Comedy of Errors last year. Hamlet The Comedy will be Jack’s third production with Oddsocks.
Over the last 33 years, Oddsocks Productions has toured to countries as far afield as the Middle East with its iconic style of comedy.
Elli Mackenzie said: “We create theatrical experiences that are for everyone. We’ve created over 70 productions and performed to over 380,000 audience members in all weathers! No hierarchy or elitism, telling good stories in innovative ways to create a great night out.”