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AKL: Shakespeare farce gets camp re-telling

Thu 4 Oct 2007 In: New Zealand Daily News View at Wayback

A new production by the University of Auckland of a classic Shakespeare comedy features men dressing as women, women dressing as men, and "a definite camp feel to it" says the director. Actor Chris Olwage Opening next week, the latest adaptation of one of Shakespeare's 16th Century plays sees a group of outcasts kidnap two young actresses and force them to perform in their production of The Taming of the Shrew. Three of the cast members for The Taming of the Shrew are out gay men. One of them, classics student Chris Olwage, says he's taking on three different roles, including a servant and a widow. Gay theatre director Patrick Graham says he's no stranger to Shakespearean comedy, having successfully directed The Comedy of Errors for the 2006 Auckland University Outdoor Summer Shakespeare. Poster art Graham describes first few scenes: "Baptista Minola is having trouble marrying off his daughter Katherine. So he decides that his younger more amiable daughter Bianca is not able to marry until Katherine has a husband. He challenges her wooers to find a man that is capable of taming Katherine." The story has attracted criticism in modern times for finishing on a sexist note, but others defend it as an ironic 'farce' not to be taken seriously. Graham says the play's events are at times brutal, but more often hilarious, as Petruchio tames the strong and wilful Katherine. William Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew is on stage at Auckland's Musgrove Studio Theatre (part of the Maidment Theatre) from October 11- 20. Booking available on the link below.     Ref: Maidment Theatre, (m)

Credit: News Staff

First published: Thursday, 4th October 2007 - 5:29pm

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