Despite the latest news about Covid we are still here and looking to the future . . .
In September we decided that it had been far too long since Tettenhall Amateur Players had put on a production and we looked at ways of how to perform on-line. To adhere to the 2 metre distancing rule we needed to find a play that did not have a large cast and little or no scenery to get in the way. Following lengthy discussions with the more technical people in the group we were delighted to find a solution! We would film our production, sell tickets on-line and a password would be sent to the audience on the performance dates. Simples!
With no more ado we fell upon two of Perry Pontac’s plays from Codpieces; Hamlet, Part II and Prince Lear and the parts were cast! These playlets have been regularly performed on BBC radio and they leant themselves perfectly to being filmed. They are parodies told in the form of prefaces and continuations: what happens after a returning ambassador turns up at the end of Hamlet or before Lear takes it into his head to share out his kingdom?
Scripts were duly distributed and line learning began in earnest. Alas our attempts were in vain and with lockdown number 2 on the cards everything came to a grinding halt. Rest assured we are all still learning our lines (well some of us are anyway!) and raring to go once the lockdown is lifted.
Perry Pontac is an American who has lived and worked in London for over forty years and frequently works in radio drama. All of his thirteen plays he has so far written for radio, exploit extreme situations and ornate language for comic purposes. With lines spoken of the late Laertes it could well be Shakespeare –
‘A corpse who even now
Is freshly festering in a nearby grave
With all the zest of youth’
These plays are not for the exclusivity of Shakespeare lovers but for those who enjoy absurdist comedy and brilliant writing. So, if you are wondering about the state of Denmark after Hamlet’s demise and how King Lear was duped into dividing up his kingdom, watch this space for further information. We are hoping to be able to have the productions ready early next spring, but who knows what the future holds? However, we must not get downhearted, we must remain positive and above all stay safe!
Wishing you all a Very Happy and Safe Christmas!