In the tumultuous William Shakespeare tragedy “Hamlet,” the tales of fate twist and turn in a way that pits family members against each other to restore order in the kingdom.
“Hamlet” will be brought to life by the Good Luck Macbeth Theatre Company beginning Friday and running through July to coincide with Artown.
“It’s our first full-length Shakespeare (play),” company president Scott Reeves said.
Although the performance is sponsored by the Siena Hotel Spa Casino in Reno, Reeves said the production is being pulled together on a light budget and large cast. Nonetheless, he added, it hasn’t deterred the theater company from dreaming big.
“We pulled out all the stops for this performance,” Reeves said. “There have only been excerpts of Hamlet that have been performed in Reno. A full-length production of Hamlet has never been done in the area. It’s not your classic local production. … Good Luck Macbeth’s goal is to highlight classic theater and to expose it to the community.”
Scheduling “Hamlet” to debut with Artown, Reeves hopes to attract audiences that might otherwise overlook Shakespeare.
“Artown is such a magnificent organization that so well promotes the arts,” Reeves said. “Having the opportunity to coincide what is our most difficult production to date, at least with people and lighting and production, we wanted to do that with the (biggest) audience we could receive.
“Putting on our best work to coincide with that is our goal,” Reeves added.
Making sure to keep the 13 actors (most of whom perform at least two roles), five dancers and 17 crew members spry, Reeves said “Hamlet” has been trimmed down from what could be a five-hour performance to two and a half hours with intermission.
“We had originally hoped to cast 22 people and we just didn’t have enough people to show up to auditions to do that,” Reeves said. “We double cast a lot of roles. We have managed to gravitate a lot of talented actors to work on this production.
“They have really stretched themselves to play more than one character,” Reeves added. “It’s not unheard of in a Shakespeare performance to see actors playing more than one character.”
When picking a play to perform for the Artown audiences, Reeves said Shakespeare just seemed like a logical choice.
“We knew we could do it,” Reeves said. “There is a belief that everything should be light and funny but I would dare to say that Hamlet is one of the most beautiful works to be written.”
Reeves said Shakespeareans would probably debate his claim but he would easily defend his reasoning that “Hamlet” should be in the top five best Shakespeare plays.
“Shakespeare has had a tremendous effect — I don’t even think ‘tremendous’ is adequate for how he has influenced society,” Reeves said. “He wrote 400 years ago and it is still something accessible to the public. It is an interesting reflection on society that 400 years ago there was a writer that had the capability of describing the human condition so well that resounds today.”
Reeves encourages potential audience members to see “Hamlet” in order to understand humanity.
“Sometimes by facing things that do not have the best outcomes, we figure out who we are,” Reeves said. “There is such amazing working going on inside of this play, the concept of good versus evil. It is human.
“I think it will be something that will be remembered,” Reeves added. “It is worth it to come down and see it.”
“Hamlet” will open on Friday. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the performance starts promptly at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 for general admission and $10 for students and seniors. Reservations can be made by calling 322-3176 or by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information about the theater company, visit www.goodluckmacbeth.org.