Saturday, May 22, 2010

Our Last Day...Middle Eastern Food and Hamlet!

Ok, I know it is a few days after the end of our trip, but I just wanted to add in a bit about our final day on this trip and some final impressions.

Wednesday was a pretty relaxed day since our only program was dinner and theater that evening. Boy was it an awesome restaurant. I feel like the Egyptian/Moroccan specialities were exactly the kind of nourishment I had been craving for a while...beans, lentils, falafel, more beans, hummus, and this DEELISH bread. Ahhh I can still taste the garlic. So glad Janet treated us there, I ate till I was super stuffed. Hey, I did my part in trying to clear up those four family sized platters!

Now for the play...whooo do I have a lot to say about this one. Let me just say that I was super sceptical at first when I saw the pictures of actors with clown make up and what not. And even more so when we got to the little chamber theater of the Deutsches Theater and saw wooden crates covering the stage! Now I was really in the mood for some traditional, straight up German rendition of this beloved tragedy (which luckily I had spent enough time studying in my 12th grade English class so I knew what the dialogue roughly was). Plus, I had heard how the Romeo and Juliet play had been awful so I was a little worried.

But it turns out that I was to be pleasantly surprised. More than that.

So yes the play was bizarre and completely took apart the original to create this wacky interpretation where all the characters except for the late King Hamlet's spirit had clown faces. And some of the characters such as Hamlet, Horatio, and Ophelia still looked quite attractive. So I'm sure many of you are familiar with Hamlet's loser friends Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, right? How they are pretty much useless. Well, this director decided to give the fools a new purpose...yes a making them the English narrators of the plot, crazy and sadistic (since death makes them excited) and wanting to eat a member of the audience (yeaaahhhh...). Boy were they ugly. But cute! And get this...Hamlet had a bunch of black balloons floating over his head constantly and Polonious wore no pants. he only boxers with the flag of England on. So one thing is for sure, you have to applaud the director for his clever ways of turning the characters into caricatures of themselves. And those actors managed to prance over the edges of the wooden boxes. An interesting stage.

Hamlet was hilarious and satirical and even used humor to a point that it enhanced the grief of the play rather than overshadow it. I enjoyed it. Then again, crazy bizarre random things are totally my taste. Just not violence and jarring moments like in "Die Stunde...". And this is also probably the first play I have seen that didn't have smoking in it.

Other than that, I felt a bit sad to see my classmates leave = (. I am staying here in Germany a little longer to visit some old friends. I hope everyone had an awesome time learning as much as I did!

1 comment:

  1. Woah...interesting point about the smoking. I think I saw a few w/out, but still, quite a few did have smoking. Well, there seems to be quite a bit more smoking here in general. Hope your visits are going swell!