Monday, April 13, 2015

The Comedy of Errors

The last piece of Wellington culture I chose to introduce Hannah too was a happy coincidence. A friend of mine was in a production of Shakespeare's "The Comedy of Errors"for the theatre programme (Whitireia Stage and Screen Arts) he was studying in at the time which just so happened to be running at the same time Hannah was there.

This was perfect for two reasons. The first is that Wellington is a very artsy city and it's theatre culture is something very much worth experiencing. The second is that Hannah majors in theatre in college. She actually ran our show when I was in the Spring play in Fort (best stage manager ever) and when I helped out on crew for the musical there.

The way that the director had chosen to approach this particular production put an interesting spin on things which is always nice when it comes to doing Shakespeare. They set the entire production inside of a 1930's era jazz club complete with bartender and period - accurate dancing before the show and at interval from the cast. They even enlisted some of the students from their music programme to form a live jazz quartet who played throughout the evening at appropriate times.

This approach made for a very interesting rendition of an extremely funny play which neither Hannah or myself had seen before.

My friend played the part of Dromio of Ephesus, and was hilariously matched up with a woman who played his twin Dromio of Syracuse. The role is a male role and most of the play's humour relies on the fact that the two different characters are supposed to look exactly the same. Somehow cross - casting one of them actually stood to make the whole thing funnier.

Similarly the parts of Antipholus of Ephesus and Antipholus of Syracuse were played by a student of European descent and a student of African descent which once again seemed to work for the better of the play due to the casts utter commitment. By the end of the performance you almost believed along with the characters involved that each of the Antipholus' and each of the Dromios is identical to the other.

It was an absolute riot of a performance and at the end of it all my stomach hurt form laughing so much. Hannah seemed to really enjoy it as well and said it was really interesting to see how another school in a different country approached theatre.

I think seeing a show was a good way to end my time hosting Hannah and showing off Wellington city yet again.

I was glad to be back to being able to sleep during the day again when Hannah took off for Dunedin (I, of course, went to see her off) but it was also sad going back to a quiet house again and knowing it would probably be a good while before I got to hang out with her again.

The next post here will be about some amazing things that happened in my life circa August 2014.

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