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James Bond meets Hamlet

May 9, 2013

Published in Metro

Spies, suspense, corrupt evildoers and a cunning leading man. But is he a dashing secret agent, or a Danish prince from the sixteenth century?

Actually, in Vaquero Playground’s play “To Denmark With Love” he’s both.

“We’ve taken the story and characters of ‘Hamlet’ but we’re retelling it through the lens and the style of ‘James Bond,’” says John King, the show’s playwright and producer.

Both stories share a major theme: espionage. Once King realized the correlation, more similarities fell into place.

“You’ve got Ophelia and Gertrude who can be taken as Bond girl types. You’ve got Claudius, a villain trying to take over the throne. You’ve got Hamlet trying to outwit Polonius and Rosencrantz and Guildenstern,” he explains.

The parody is set in Shakespearean Elizabethan times, loosely.

“There are quite a few winkingly anachronistic jokes and some more contemporary Bond references in there as well,” says King.

Sticking with the film motif, the theater company will present their show like a movie. Before every performance they’ll feature “trailers” from local theater groups showing off their own productions. There’s a soundtrack, too, featuring local bands of note, including Michael J. Epstein Memorial Library, Jaggery, and more.

“You can’t do a Bond show without a brand new theme song, so we’ve made a CD of original James Bond theme songs written by ten different Boston bands,” says King.

Vaquero Playground

Three-year-old theater company Vaquero Playground’s slogan is “fun, cheap, dirty theater.” The “cheap” part is twofold: Tickets to shows are just $10 ($5 for students), and the group strives to be green by using recycled materials for their sets and props.

One Comment leave one →
  1. May 9, 2013 7:08 pm


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