Women playing Hamlet?


May 19, 2023

County Seat Theater Company will present “Women Playing Hamlet,” a modern comedy about an old tragedy by William Missouri Downs. The show will feature an all-female cast performing multiple roles and is rip-roaring fun for Shakespeare fans and haters alike. “Hamlet” is a challenge for any actor, but when Jessica (played by Angel Maloney) is cast

as the titular character in a New York production, it sends her into an existential tailspin.

It doesn’t help that her acting coach is borderline abusive, or that every Starbucks barista with an MFA tells her she’s too young for the role. Or that she’s somehow managed to make Sir Patrick Stewart her nemesis. Not to mention the fact that she’s a woman. How can Jessica figure out “to be or not to be,” when she can’t even figure out herself?

“Theater has had a history of excluding women and women’s voices,” says director Greg J. Anderson. “Case in point: even the female characters in Shakespeare’s time were all played by men!”

Anderson adds, “For this show in particular, these talented women get to “flip the script” by performing all the roles — female and male. They deftly disclose their characters through their own lenses. It’s amazing what you can experience when every voice can be heard.”

The County Seat Theater Company will present local performances of ‘Women Playing Hamlet’ at the Encore Performing Arts Center in Cloquet at 2 p.m. on May 21, 27 and 28, and at 7 p.m. on May 24, 25 and 26. The show will also be available on demand May 26-28. Tickets can be reserved by calling the box office at 218-878-0071 or online at http://www.countyseattheater. Com.

Prior to the show, audience members can stroll through the art gallery and view art from local artists. This production has featured works of art by Margie Helstrom. Helstrom works in the water based media of watercolor, acrylic, gouache and oil. Viewers are drawn to her work by her masterful use of color and whimsical perspectives of her subject matter. There will be an art opening Thursday, May 18 from 6-7 p.m. at the Encore.

Since 2008, the County Seat Theater Company has been located in the Encore

Performing Arts Center, at 2035 Hwy 33 South (on Frontage Road) in Cloquet. The

theater offers a full season of local performances, as well as youth productions, musical

acts and has an art gallery featuring work by local artists.


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