Enemies, balconies, kissing and, erm, sausage rolls...
The all-male, all-silly, Rubbish Shakespeare Company presents their new comic interpretation of Romeo and Juliet. Rubbish Shakespeare's version adds a fresh comic twist to a beloved classic. With unkempt wigs and the burliest Juliet yet, it's silly enough for the whole family.
After a performance with the Everyman Playhouse and three packed out previews at Discover Space, Rubbish Shakespeare has some big plans for this top show. They are currently embarking on a tour of the North West with Romeo and Juliet and will be stopping off at Salford Arts Theatre on 13th July before ending with a run at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in the highly prestigious Pleasance Courtyard.
Alex Ferguson (not that one, obvs) discusses his Rubbish Shakespeare highlights... "It's got to the mad, creative rehearsals we go through to make each scene of the play" he says "We start with the basic structure and scenes, and look at how they can be re-imagined, and have twists added to them but still clearly tell the story. Then we build and build on that through silly improvisation, and refine it down to the best bits!"
The Rubbish Shakespeare Company has reworked Romeo and Juliet for a family audience but the show still manages to highlight the passion and gore of the tale and explore the complexities of Shakespeare's most famous love story... "The opening's crazy, it has the Montagues and Capulets literally biting their thumbs at each other, and drops the audience right into the thick of the action" Alex explains "Someone gets hit with a shoe! I'd also say the party scene, where we first meet Juliet...I don't want to spoil it, so I'll just say that it involves a lot of sausage rolls and an attempted kiss."
Artistic Director Lee Hithersay elaborates: "Sometimes Shakespeare can seem overly academic and dry, but this doesn't have to be the case. Our mission statement is 'Shakespeare for all', and our performances will engage all ages and unlock the fantastic world of the bard. Get them hooked young!"
It's a raucous comedy that taps into the humour and off-the-wall nature of Shakespeare. Similar to the triumphant Horrible Histories, The Rubbish Shakespeare Company engages and makes the work of The Bard fun and accessible.
As Alex states, "We stay true to Shakespeare and the story, and we find it really important to respect it. But there's a lot of clowning and modern jokes that work for both adults and children, plus the story is performed by four blokes playing all the characters with silly wigs on. It's not your 'traditional' Shakespeare. Though we think this is the way Shakespeare would have wanted it; big, bold and barmy."
The show stars Lee Hithersay, Alex MacDonald, Clement Studholme and Alex Ferguson. Sit back and enjoy the cast of four playing sixteen characters! It promises to be a frantic romp that juggles roles and accents to deliver an all action Romeo and Juliet.
The Rubbish Shakespeare Company presents…
Romeo and Juliet
Friday 13th July 6pm
Salford Arts Theatre £10/£6
Kemsing Walk, off Tunbridge Square
Off Liverpool Street
To get tickets – click here
Words by Ian Leslie