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In The Wooster Group's HAMLET, Shakespeare's classic tragedy is re-imagined by mixing and repurposing Richard Burton's 1964 Broadway production, directed by John Gielgud. The Burton production was recorded in live performance from 17 camera angles and edited into a film that was shown as a special event for only two days in nearly 1,000 movie houses across the U.S. The idea of bringing a live theater experience to thousands of simultaneous viewers in different cities was trumpeted as a new form called "Theatrofilm," made possible through "the miracle of Electronovision." The Wooster Group attempts to reverse the process, reconstructing a hypothetical theater piece from the fragmentary evidence of the edited film. We channel the ghost of the legendary 1964 performance, descending into a kind of madness, intentionally replacing our own spirit with the spirit of another.


Production Credits

by William Shakespeare

Hamlet: Scott Shepherd
Claudius/Marcellus/Ghost/Gravedigger: Ari Fliakos
Gertrude/Ophelia: Kate Valk
Polonius: Greg Mehrten
Horatio/Rosencrantz/Guildenstern/Player Queen: Daniel Pettrow
Laertes/Rosencrantz/Guildenstern/Player King: Casey Spooner
Nurse: Koosil-ja
Bernardo/Voltemand: Alessandro Magania

Director: Elizabeth LeCompte
Set: Ruud van den Akker
Lighting: Jennifer Tipton
Sound: Matt Schloss, Omar Zubair, Bobby McElver
Video: Andrew Schneider, Aron Deyo
Assistant to the Director/Stage Manager: Teresa Hartmann
Production Manager: Jim Dawson
Technical Director: Aron Deyo
Master Electrician: Kent Barrett
Costumes: Claudia Hill
Fight Coach: Felix Ivanov
Additional Music: Warren Fischer
Associate Director: Kate Valk
Producer: Cynthia Hedstrom
General & Company Manager: Sandra Garner
Development & Marketing: Jamie Poskin
Archivist: Clay Hapaz
Video Blog: Zbigniew Bzymek

Special Thanks to Richard Prince

Additional Credits: Geoff Abbas and Matt Tierney originated elements of the sound score; Dan Dobson, John Collins, Jim Dawson, and Joby Emmons also contributed to the sound. Reid Farrington collaborated in the original video design; Anna Henckel-Donnersmarck and Zbigniew Bzymek originated elements of the video; and Margaret Mann, Shaun Irons, and Lauren Petty contributed to the video. Elements of the men's clothes were provided by Adam Kimmel. Natalie Thomas was the movement coach. Dominique Bousquet, Roy Faudree, Lola Pashalinski, and Bill Raymond performed in earlier versions of the piece.

HAMLET is presented through special arrangement with Paul Brownstein. HAMLET is a co-production of The Wooster Group and the 30 Festival of Barcelona Grec-Institute de Cultura, Ajuntament of Barcelona.

Production History

2005 March-July: HAMLET rehearsals at The Performing Garage
2005 October-2006 January: HAMLET rehearsals at The Performing Garage
2006 February-March: HAMLET rehearsals at St. Ann's Warehouse
2006 April-May: HAMLET rehearsals at The Performing Garage
2006 June 27-July 1: HAMLET performances at Festival Grec in Barcelona, Spain
2006 September: HAMLET rehearsals at The Performing Garage
2006 November 4-10: HAMLET performances at Festival d'Automne in Paris, France
2006 November 16-20: HAMLET performances at Hebbel Theater in Berlin, Germany
2007 January: HAMLET rehearsals at The Performing Garage
2007 February 27-March 25: HAMLET performances at St. Ann's Warehouse in Brooklyn, New York
2007 June 6-9: HAMLET performances at the Holland Festival in Amsterdam, The Netherlands
2007 October 9-December 2: HAMLET performances at the Public Theater in New York City
2008 January 30-February 10: HAMLET performances at REDCAT in Los Angeles, California
2008 June 13-16: HAMLET performances at the Hellenic Festival in Athens, Greece
2009 August 2-5: HAMLET performances at Festiwal Szekspirowski in Gdansk, Poland
2010 May 6-9: HAMLET performances at the International Shakespeare Festival at the Bulandra Theater in Bucharest, Romania
2011 January: HAMLET rehearsals at The Performing Garage
2011 September: HAMLET rehearsals at The Performing Garage
2011 October 12-16: HAMLET performances at the Ringling International Arts Festival at The Cook Theatre in Sarasota, Florida
2012 October 4-7: HAMLET performances at the Dublin Theater Festival at the O'Reilly Theatre in Dublin, Ireland
2012 October 24-November 18: HAMLET performances at The Performing Garage in New York City
2013 January 17-20: HAMLET performances at Festival Internacional Santiago a Mil, Santiago, Chile
2013 March 13-17: HAMLET performances at SESC Pompeia, São Paulo, Brazil
2013 August 10-13: HAMLET performances at Edinburgh International Festival at the Royal Lyceum Theatre, Edinburgh, United Kingdom