David Hargreaves Joins Cast of Shakespeare@ Inaugural Production Of HAMLET

David Hargreaves Joins Cast of Shakespeare@ Inaugural Production Of HAMLET

The Legendary David Hargraves is the voice of the ghost of Hamlet's father in the Shakespeare@ inaugural production of HAMLET, which begins performances Thursday, March 28th. HAMLET opens on Sunday, March 31st at Grace Church Van Vorst (39 Erie Street, Jersey City - a five-minute walk from the Path Train). Directed by Shakespeare@ Artistic Director Sean Hagerty, HAMLET is set against the stunning architecture of Grace Church Van Vorst, offering a suspenseful reverence, aided by the masterful storytelling of a cast of veteran and rising stars of stage, television and film. Tickets, priced at $25, are available at shakespeare-at.org.

David Hargreaves is a veteran of the English stage and screen having made his debut with the Royal Shakespeare Company in Peter Hall and John Barton's famous production, The Wars of the Roses in 1963-65. He then joined Laurence Olivier's newly formed National Theatre, appearing in Much Ado about Nothing, Mother Courage, The Crucible, Royal Hunt of the Sun, Love for Love, Othello, The Storm, A Flea in Her Ear and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. After an extensive career in theatre, television and radio, he returned to the RSC in 2004 to play Capulet in Romeo and Juliet in Peter Gill's production, and as Gloucester in Bill Alexander's production of King Lear opposite Corin Redgrave. Other credits include: The Taming of the Shrew, and The Cordelia Dream (RSC); On the Shore of the Wide World (The National), The Mysteries, and Henry V (Shakespeare's Globe); The Crucible, and King Lear (Bristol Old Vic); Later this year, he stars in the soon to be released film, Last Christmas, written by Emma Thompson.

The Shakespeare@ production of HAMLET stars Jonathan Forbes (Amazon's Catastrophe, iTV's Fearless, Dublin Murders) in the title role, Eden Brolin (Freeform's Beyond, Lifetime's Manson's Lost Girls, Arkansas opposite Vince Vaughn and John Malkovich) as Ophelia, Andrew Sellon (Gotham) as Polonius, Aria Shahghasemi (CW's Legacies) as Laertes and Mark Torres (Amadeus, NBC's Manifest) as Claudius. Rounding out the cast are Thia Stephan, Francis Mateo, Fernando Hernández, André Revels, Tenzin Yeshi, Mark J. Quiles, Alice Marks, Wesli Spencer, and Robert Steven Anderson.

Inspired by Sean Hagerty's theatre-going experiences in the UK during his artistic training, Shakespeare@ will deliver accessible interpretations of classic works, focusing on diverse dramas with sprawling casts in a new, intimate location for each production. Celebrating Jersey City's distinction as one of the most diverse cities in America, Hagerty intends for all Shakespeare@ audiences "to be able to recognize themselves and their neighborhoods" on the stage, in addition showcasing the beautiful spaces the city has to offer its community.

"Jersey City is a perfect place to offer Shakespeare," says Hagerty. "There's nothing like it here right now. In the past 10 years, there has been so much great change. It's an exciting time to be here." Hagerty believes that the community and artists alike can grow in empathy and humanity by exposure to other ideas and cultures.

One of the world's most powerful, frequently interpreted, and oft-quoted dramas, HAMLET illuminates the title character's internal conflict as he navigates life after his father's murder by his uncle, who has usurped the throne. Consumed by visions of his deceased father, HAMLET is driven to madness in his quest for vengeance. Replete with ill-fated romance, bloody battles, and breathtaking soliloquies, it is no surprise that HAMLET remains at the forefront of the theatrical canon over 400 years later.

Original music for HAMLET is composed by Joan Melton. Lighting design is by Sarah Johnston, with costumes by Anne-Marie Wright and sound design by Donghyuk Chang. Brad Lemons serves as fight director, with Joan Melton as voice & speech coach and casting by Robin Carus. Sydney Steele is the associate producer.

The playing schedule for HAMLET is as follows: Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 7:30pm; and Sunday at 7pm. Performances begin March 28, with official opening on March 31 for a limited run through April 14. Tickets are $25 and can be purchased at shakespeare-at.org.

Photo Credit: Will O'Hare

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