Shakespeare & Friends reimagines Hamlet in Tryon

Published 12:32 pm Friday, September 1, 2023

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‘Hamlet: The Requiem’ to be performed at Tryon Depot


TRYON—Shakespeare & Friends, a theater group based in Tryon, plans to breathe new life into William Shakespeare’s most famous tragedy. Hamlet: The Requiem is an original adaptation offering a fresh take on the timeless play, written and directed by Anthony Abraira and featuring a cast of top actors from Tryon. 

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Both traditional Shakespeare enthusiasts and the younger, digital generation are invited into the world of Hamlet, with an immersive plot, shortened duration and minimalist staging.

Hamlet: The Requiem will be presented at the historic Tryon Depot from September 21 through 24. All performances will be at 8 p.m. 

“The production is a witnessing rather than a performance, aiming to create a unique and intimate connection between the audience and the world of Hamlet,” says Director Anthony Abraira. “No intermission will intensify the dramatic tension, ensuring spectators remain fully engaged from beginning to end. A beautiful row of dominos is set, ready to fall at any moment.”

While the original lines were written by Shakespeare, they have been cleverly rearranged and, at times, reassigned to different characters, enhancing Shakespeare’s poetic genius with a familiar meter for modern dialogue that catches the ear.

In addition to its innovative storytelling and captivating performances, the production of Hamlet: The Requiem by Shakespeare & Friends promises to create an immersive and cinematically scored world.

“The room doesn’t go silent for the entire play,” said producer Michelle Newman. “We’ve created an atmosphere that captures multiple energies and narratives with a carefully curated sound bed.”

In a departure from traditional gender role assignments, the titular role of Hamlet will be portrayed by actress and frequent Shakespeare & Friends collaborator Hillary Parks. Park’s captivating performance promises to offer a fresh perspective on Hamlet’s inner turmoil, challenging conventional expectations and delivering a powerful portrayal.

“With the cast so close, audiences are stirred up,” said Parks. “There is nowhere to run. But in a place like that, you don’t have to be a loud actor, you don’t have to ham it up. It’s hyper-realistic at times.”


Submitted by Michelle Newman