Great Dane


Last night I had the great pleasure of seeing what is arguably William Shakespeare’s most famous play (with the most well known quotes), Hamlet, live on the Broadway stage … starring Jude Law. Hamlet is one of my favorite plays and I have seen many productions/incarnations of the tale. My two favorites are Kenneth Branaugh’s 4-hour epic movie and, if you can believe it, Ethan Hawke’s modern retelling set in NYC. Last year I saw and LOVED the Broadway production of MacBeth which starred Patrick Stewart so I had high hopes that Jude Law’s Hamlet would be just as good. I am happy to report that the this production of the play is fantastic:

Right off the bat, I loved the sparse staging of the show. The props are kept to a minimum and the set is one big, high-walled room in castle Elsinore … the starkness of the space with the effective use of light really made for an excellent setting for the play. Jude Law’s Hamlet was very emo … right down to the emo sweater he wore. The costuming was modern but the tone of the setting still had an old feeling to it. Jude really loses himself in the moody role of Hamlet … he paces around in mad fashion, pulling at his hair at odd times … wringing his hands in a minorly insane way — he really puts on a great performance. For much of the 2 1/2 hour play, the audience was held in rapt silence … the play is really very engrossing. There are many great scenes in Hamlet but in this production, I really enjoyed the burial of Ophelia scene … the one with the famous line, Alas poor Yorick, I knew him Horatio. There is also an effective use of falling snow in the To be, or not to be scene that really captures the sad spirit of this tragic play. I am so happy I got to see this production of the play, it’s really not to be missed. Fans of Shakespeare should deffo see this production … I loved it!!

I have to give a shout-out to Pink reader Barrie who I met before the show last night … it was my pleasure meeting you :)

After the performance was finished, I met up with my good friend Tom Lenk for a late-night supper at Sardi’s. As I mentioned previously, Tom will be joining the Broadway cast of Rock of Ages this week and we met up to catch up and talk about how crazy his life has been for the past two weeks. Dinner was superb and it was really great seeing him look so well. He is so ready for his Broadway debut, I cannot WAIT to see him!! David and I will be attending Friday night’s performance of Rock of Ages — which will be the first for new castmembers Tom Lenk (as Franz) and Kerry Butler (as Sherrie). I LOOOOOOVE Kerry Butler, she was the lead in Xanadu and she will make an excellent lead for RoA. Sooooo excited for Friday!!

This afternoon, David and I are meeting up with our dear friends Sashie and Will so that we can meet their newborn baby boy Jasper. Of all the fun things I’ve scheduled for this NYC trip, meeting little Jasper is by far my fave. I hope to have pics to share soon!!

  • Green Is Good

    Trent, I so agree with you about Branaugh’s Hamlet. It flies by even at 4 hours. Brilliant!

    The Ethan Hawke version is quite interesting, despite Ethan’s pretentious, Goth slacker-boy performance. To me, his performance was a redo of his character in Reality Bites. But that’s my lame-ass opinion.

    Wish I could see this production. Trent, you lucky devil!

  • Kat

    Love Shakespeare…. this sounds like a great rendition.

    Trent, have you seen Richard III w/Ian McKellan? That was brilliant… the soliloquy at the beginning was so natural in the more modern setting… brilliant all around and you keep wondering how they would apply the modern to the play — just loved it.

    • @Kat — LOOOOVE McKellan’s Richard III … fave line is: “A horse, a horse … my kingdom for a horse” when his WWI jeep is stuck in the mud. Great adaptation.

  • Krissy

    Ian McKellan is one of my heroes! I love that version…sigh. I would love to see this production of Hamlet as well. The staging sounds amazing, and Jude is a great actor, even if he is a bit of cad in his personal life.

  • Shannon

    Until last night, Kenneth Branaugh gave my favorite portrayal of Hamlet… after seeing Jude Law perform him however, it’s now difficult to say. They both brought something so different to the role. Sad to say, I thought the actress who played Ophelia was very weak (maybe it was an off night?)
    Trent (and all Shakespeare lovers), if you haven’t seen Anthony Hopkins as Titus Andronicus, do! He’s phenomenal!

  • Emily

    I have always been a Shakespeare fan, and Hamlet was always my most favorite!! Awesome you gave Kenneth Branaughs version a shout out!! I can’t tell you how many time’s i’ve seen it or the reactions my friends had when I made them watch it with me ;)

  • Winona

    Yum – Sardi’s…

  • joanna

    I know people have been down on him, but i loves me some Jude Law!!

  • sheryl

    Not me, Joanna, I’m not down on Jude. I love him, too. He’s a fantastic person, and I don’t see anything “caddish” about him (and I hate the word “cad”…don’t know why…weird). It’s the tabloid gossip (i.e., the stuff that’s either not true or exaggerated) that gets imprinted on him, sadly. I personally take it all with a grain of salt…about the J-Ps, about Jennifer Aniston, about the Cruises, and about Jude, too. So….anyway, my friends and I are making the trip to NYC in October to see the play, and I’m looking forward to it so much! Haven’t been in NYC in 2 years (and I really like that city) and seeing Jude’s Hamlet will make it even better.

  • Katlin

    I saw this production in London back in June, and I completely agree with you! It was absolutely fantastic. Jude Law’s performance was outstanding! I hope I get the chance to see it on Broadway as well!

  • dolorescraeg

    i saw jude’s performance in london. it was mesmerizing. he was brilliant. i loved it so i have tickets to see it in n.y. cannot get enough of the LAW.

  • Kayla

    While Hamlet isn’t one of my favorites I’m jealous of you seeing Jude’s version, I would love to see his take on it. The best production I’ve seen was when I was in 7th grade and put on by a semi-local theater group. It was a modern take on it and they made Hamlet’s mother an alcoholic (while never saying that in the play, every seen she was in she was drinking/pouring herself a drink) and for some reason that just really stuck with me.

  • Kayla

    And by seen I mean scene.

  • mlcwildlifepr

    Love the Branagh version as well, and also can see Jude giving a good performance – nice and “angsty”. For a different perspective on Hamlet, be sure to see the movie version of the Tom Stoppard play “Rosenkrantz and Guildenstern are Dead” with TIm Roth and Gary Oldman – and Richard Dreyfuss. That is one of my top 10 fave movies of all time – very clever, funny and you still get the Hamlet story in the background.

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