Print Edition - 2017-07-04  |  Life & Style

Hamlet? for ‘comic relief’

- Post Report, Kathmandu

Jul 4, 2017-

Three years ago, after Ashutosh Sharma finished his undergraduates, he was uncertain what he would do in life, but he knew that he was interested in performance and drama. After he let his interest be known to his father, his father handed him a paperback, the English author William Shakespeare’s classic tragedy Hamlet. 

Sharma was an avid fan of American TV series and sitcoms. “The influence of Hamlet and TV series had captured my imagination in equal amount,” Sharma said in a phone conversation with the Post. The budding theatre artist then began writing a script for a play, which was an improvisation on the original Hamlet. In his script, he added references to widely popular series like Game of Thrones. The script, after three years of writing, has now made it to the stage. 

The play, curiously titled Hamlet?, is currently being staged at the Sarwanam Theatre in Kalikasthan and it’s a comedy. When asked about the title and why he decided to offer a comic rendition of the timeless tragedy, Sharma said, “I thought some of the instances in the original play do not quite hold the relevance today and I thought about adding my own imagination to it. And I borrowed from the pop culture today. I threw into the script a few references to today’s pop culture. Hamlet? is culmination of all that.” 

The staging is being organised by Gypsy Theatre, which, according to Himamshu Goyal of the newly-minted group, seeks to give the audience a “comic relief.” “Hamlet has been staged a few times in Nepal and countlesst times around the world. When a single play, though extraordinary it certainly is, gets staged, its plotlines largely unaltered, there is fear that the audience begins to develop a certain distaste to it,” said Goyal, adding, “That’s why, we have edited the plotline to a certain measure, aspiring to bring in a notch of freshness to the rendition of the play. We have done some reworking with the character, though their names are unaltered.” The play is in English. 

Hamlet? will be on stage every day (except for Thursday) at 5pm, through July 8. 

Published: 04-07-2017 07:47

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