HAMLET Opens At Gloucester Stage
Gloucester Stage Company wraps up its 40th Anniversary Season of professional theater with William Shakespeare's Hamlet from October 25 through November 17 at Gloucester Stage Company, 267 East Main Street, Gloucester, MA.. Hamlet's story begins when she meets her father's ghost, revealing that her uncle, Claudius, has murdered him and taken Hamlet's mother, Gertrude, for his queen. Hamlet then begins her journey of revenge while struggling with self-doubt and facing challenges from all sides. Hamlet features Artistic Director of Actors' Shakespeare Project Christopher V. Edwards in his GSC directing debut and a cast headlined by acclaimed Boston actress Gigi Watson making her GSC debut in the title role of Hamlet. The cast also includes GSC newcomers Shawn K. Jain as Claudius, Charlotte Kinder as Ophelia, Olivia Miller as Gertude, Zachary Zamsky as Laertes, and a returning GSC favorite from 2017's SRO production of To Kill A Mockingbird, Thomas Grenon as Polonius.
Director Christopher V. Edwards comments on staging Shakespeare's enduring classic in 2019, "Hamlet is a show about where we live with our personal moral compass. It lends itself to various types of people, ages of people, genders of people, races and cultures of people to look at the play through their own lens. In the GSC production we will be looking at Hamlet as a woman and we're looking at how that changes the dynamics of the relationships between people. It'll be a same sex relationship between Hamlet and Ophelia, and there's generational conflict inherent in the play. We're also interested in how young people today are dealing with this issue of feeling disenfranchised and not quite sure how they want to define themselves and how they want the world to define them and whether they want to be defined."
Director Christopher V. Edwards' Boston credits include Pride and Prejudice, Equivocation (Elliot Norton Nomination for Best Play), and Much Ado About Nothing, all with Actors' Shakespeare Project. Some of his favorite shows include: Othello, Romeo and Juliet, The Three Musketeers, Around the World in 80 Days, Hamlet, A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Winter's Tale, Water by the Spoonful, The Bomb-itty of Errors, How to Break, Venus in Fur, and A Raisin in the Sun. He has worked in London's West End, Off-Broadway, The National Theatre of Oslo in Norway, The Helix in Ireland, The Fringe in Edinburgh, John Houseman's The Acting Company, HERE Arts Center, Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Penumbra Theatre, The Flea Theater, Cleveland Playhouse, Hip-Hop Theatre Festival, Utah Shakespeare Festival, Soho Rep, the Guthrie Theatre, Cincinnati Shakespeare Company and Dorset Theater Festival among others. Mr. Edwards received an M.F.A. from the U. of MN in Association with the Guthrie Theatre. Prior to becoming the Artistic Director of Actors' Shakespeare Project, he spent three years at Nevada Conservatory Theatre as the Artistic Director and on the faculty at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and fourteen years with the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival in Garrison, NY as the Associate Artistic Director, the Director of Education and Apprentice Training.
Gigi Watson makes her GSC debut as Hamlet. Her regional credits include Rhinoceros, and Lenin's Embalmers at Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater; Small Mouth Sounds and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime at SpeakEasy Stage; Brawler at Boston Playwrights Theatre; Hamlet, The Taming of the Shrew, and Macbeth with Brown Box Theatre Project; Billy Elliot with Wheelock Family Theatre; Finish Line with Boston Theater Company; and Café Variations with ArtsEmerson/Siti Company. Ms. Watson holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from Emerson College. She coaches acting and audition prep with My College Audition. This winter, Ms Watson will play Portia in The Merchant of Venice with Actors Shakespeare Project.
Thomas Grenon returns to GSC to play Polonius after previously appearing in GSC's critically-acclaimed 2017 production of To Kill A Mockingbird directed by Judy Braha. A Boston based actor; Mr. Grenon received an IRNE award nomination last season for Best Actor in a Fringe Play for Delicate Particle Logic with Flat Earth Theatre Company. He has worked with many Boston area theater companies including Actors' Shakespeare Project, Bridge Repertory Company, Apollinaire Theatre Company, Zeitgeist Stage Company, Hub Theatre Company, Arts After Hours, 7 Stages Shakespeare Company and The Bay Colony Shakespeare Company. Mr. Grenon produced and directed 8 The Play, the fight for Marriage Equality for Broadway Impact. He attended the National Shakespeare Conservatory in NYC.
Shawn K. Jain is making his GSC debut as Claudius. Originally from Northern California, Mr. Jain is an actor and communications professional based in New York City. His previous stage credits include New Repertory Theatre (Heartland), Merrimack Repertory Theater (Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley), American Repertory Theater (Charlotte's Web, Assistance, Our Town), Moscow Art Theater (Fear and Misery in the Third Reich), Constellation Theatre (The Fire and The Rain), Prince George's County Shakespeare (Twelfth Night). Mr. Jain's upcoming Film/TV performances include Thespian, Season 2 on Amazon, A Ring for Christmas, and Extra Room. He trained at the A.R.T. Institute at Harvard University/Moscow Art Theater School.
Charlotte Kinder is making her GSC debut as Ophelia. Her recent credits include Twelfth Night (Viola) and Shipwrecked! (Ensemble) with Moonbox Productions; Red Velvet (Ellen Tree) with O.W.I. Bureau of Theatre; Julius Caesar (Portia) with the Actors' Shakespeare Project; King Lear, Romeo & Juliet (Juliet-CSC2), and Twelfth Night with the Commonwealth Shakespeare Company; Everyman (Sister/Fellowship) and Greenland (Tanya) with the Apollinaire Theatre Company; Northanger Abbey (Catherine) at the Wickham Theatre in Bristol, England; and Frankenstein (Elizabeth) at the Bristol Festival of Ideas. Ms. Kinder holds a Masters in acting from the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School.
Olivia Miller is making her GSC debut as Gertrude. Her New York stage credits include Cherry Lane Theater and Culture Project and on film, Lolita Express. Ms. Miller's local credits include Trinity Repertory Company, OBERON, Wilbury Theatre Group, and Greater Boston Stage. Her recent roles include Audrey in Little Shop of Horrors at Trinity Rep; Greta Garbo in Coming Attraction with Wilbury Theatre Group; Susan in tick...tick...BOOM and Viola in Twelfth Night with Brown University/Trinity Repertory Company. Her solo show, Bloody Mary: LIVE!," which imagines Queen Mary I as a standup comic, had it's Boston premiere at the American Repertory Theater's OBERON in August 2019. She earned her BA from Harvard College and her MFA from Brown University/Trinity Repertory Company.
Recent Boston University graduate Zachary Zamsky is making his GSC debut as Laertes. After graduating last spring from Boston University, Mr. Zamsky headed home to New York, where starred onstage in Morning by Simon Stephens, and in a television pilot where he played a variety of roles that ranged from a Renaissance bad boy to mime to a hit man. He recently appeared in the short film, Union County.
SINGLE TICKET PRICES: Single Ticket prices are $15 to $48 with discounts available for Preview Performances, Senior Citizens, Military Families, and College Students and those under 18 years of age. For detailed ticket information visit www.gloucesterstage.com
PAY WHAT YOU WISH: SATURDAY, OCTOBER 26, 2 PM: Gloucester Stage is committed to inclusion and diversity, including socio-economic status. Pay What You Wish performances are the first Saturday Matinee (2pm) of each production, allowing access to the arts for all. No one is turned away for lack of funds and donations can be made before or after the show.
CAPE ANN NIGHTS: FRIDAY, OCTOBER 25, 7:30 PM; SATURDAY, OCTOBER 26, 2 PM & 7:30 PM; Enriching our local community is key to our mission impact. Residents of Cape Ann can purchase $25 tickets at Preview Performances and every Wednesday of each production. Limit of 2 (two) per household. Tickets can be purchased by calling the Box Office 978.281.4433, with a valid address.
POST-SHOW DISCUSSIONS: SUNDAY: NOVEMBER 3 & NOVEMBER 10: Following the 2 pm performances on Sunday, NOVEMBER 3 and Sunday, NOVEMBER 10, audiences are invited to free post-show discussions with the artists from Hamlet.