Friday, May 7, 2010

Brush Up Your Shakespeare

"But the poet of them all,
Who will start 'em simply ravin',
Is the poet people call
The bard of Stratford-on-Avon."
Cole Porter

DAY 210:  I make no secret of the fact that I don't care very much for Shakespeare.  I'm not fond of reading it, seeing it performed, and CERTAINLY not performing it myself.  I'm not too proud to say "I don't get it" ... and probably never will, if I haven't already.  Imagine my trepidation at going to see a comedy in which a 1940's film noir private eye interacts with a multitude of Shakespeare characters - a play called The Maltese Bodkin.

Imagine, then, my utter DELIGHT when I found myself laughing from the beginning to the end of this remarkably clever, original, and HYSTERICAL play.  I'm not a Shakespeare fan, but I knew enough about most of the plays to get the witty references and gags peppered throughout the show, which detailed detective Birnam Wood's (get it? ;-) investigation of his partner's death and the mysterious Maltese Bodkin.  Among his suspects and clients - Mercutio, Falstaff, Puck, Viola, Donalbain, Richard II, Prospero, and Iago.

Favorite moments ... a terrific Tom Stoppard-ish take on Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, and a couple of gut-busters.  GB #1 - Birnam Wood's line to his secretary, "We can't give the bodkin to the police, they lose evidence - remember what happened to all those knives in the Caesar case."  GB #2 - Wood's secretary to Lady MacBeth, "Don't get blood on your dress, those spots never come out."  LOVE.  IT.

Thanks, Theatre Jacksonville for a FUN night!

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