Published 23 November 2022
On Thursday 10 November, A Level Drama students travelled to Bristol to watch a production of Shakespeare’s tragedy ‘Hamlet’ at the renowned Bristol Old Vic Theatre. It is an integral part of the A Level Drama course to watch live theatre, which supports students’ own practical creations and written work.
John Haidar’s production included inky backdrops, jagged sound and frenzied violence. Billy Howle starred as a prince emanating unhinged anger. A contemporary twist was injected into this play with its superb set design and costumes, which included an elegant revolving stage. This was visually thrilling for the audience. All students enjoyed the trip, and it may have even ignited their passion for exploring Shakespeare further in the future.
Much Ado About Nothing
In order to enhance our A Level learning, in which we have been exploring our three set texts from the director, audience and designer’s perspective, we went to see Shakespeare’s comedy ‘Much Ado About Nothing’, at Vue Cinema, Newbury on Tuesday 15 November. The production was by the National Theatre and was set in an Italian hotel in Messina; this was distinctly clear, unique and displayed by vibrant costume and set design. Although the play was written in the late 1500s and first performed in the early 1600s, the costumes and music were set in the 1920s and made it much more accessible to a contemporary audience. The acting was of extremely high quality and featured a number of well-known actors. Overall, it was an incredible production to have watched and be able to use in my own work at A Level and beyond.
Luisa Sutherland (12C2)