Olney Theatre Center presents Bedlam's Saint Joan and Hamlet in Repertory
New York's critically acclaimed BEDLAM THEATRE brings Hamlet and Saint Joan to Olney Theatre Center from September 5 through October 20 in the Mulitz-Gudelsky Lab. Four of BEDLAM's actors play over fifty roles in repertory.
"What a rare and rich treat to see a group of performers stretch the classics as far as possible and not one inch further." - The New York Times
Shakespeare's Hamlet tells the story of Prince Hamlet as he returns home to Denmark to attend his father's funeral. When Hamlet arrives he's shocked to find his mother already remarried - to his father's brother, Claudius, who has crowned himself King despite the fact that Hamlet is heir to the throne. No wonder Hamlet suspects foul play. BEDLAM brings their unique performance style to Shakespeare's greatest play - arguably the greatest play in the English language.
Considered by many to be George Bernard Shaw's greatest play, Saint Joan opened in 1920, just three years after Joan of Arc was canonized. In this stripped down, boldly theatrical, critically acclaimed production, we meet the Joan of Arc that Shaw believed in: not a saint, a witch, or a madwoman, but a French farm girl who is anything but simple - an illiterate intellectual, a true genius whose focus on the individual rocked the Church and State to their core.
"Bedlam is a fantastic, youthful and seriously smart company dedicated to making the words of the greatest plays in the western canon leap off the page, across the stage and into your hearts and minds," said Artistic Director Jason Loewith. "There is no set, the actors hardly wear costumes, and the music - when there is any - is played by a hand-held tape recorder. No tricks, no gimmicks: just a gathering space for the audience, four wonderfully skilled actors, and the words."
Ted Lewis, Andrus Nichols, Tom O'Keefe, and Eric Tucker will all make their Olney Theatre Center debuts with Hamlet and Saint Joan. Director and Co-Artistic Director Eric Tucker not only directs but stars as the lead in Hamlet and takes on multiple roles in Saint Joan. Andrus Nichols (also Co-Artistic Director) showcases her talents as Saint Joan. Tom O'Keefe, a veteran to both productions, takes on Cauchon, Bluebeard and numerous other roles in Saint Joan as well as Claudius, Rosincrantz, Gravedigger and others in Hamlet. Ted Lewis plays Dauphin, De Stogumber, and numerous others in Saint Joan and Horatio, Laertes, and others in Hamlet.
"BEDLAM is thrilled to share its unique Saint Joan and Hamlet with Olney audiences," states Andrus Nichols. "We are honored to be included in the history of the Olney, and to join the ranks of impressive performers that have tread these boards since 1938!"