The latest show from Three Chairs and a Hat puts some of the Bard’s most famous women in the 21st century and its settings (you may recall the Barn Theatre doing something similar with a range of characters of all genders in their three series of Bard From The Barn last year.
Billed as a taster for their forthcoming digital project, the company have chosen well with their characters – Mistress Quickly, Ophelia, Helena, Julia, and more – and at twenty minutes, this focuses on simple snapshots going straight to the heart of each of the women.
Directed, filmed and edited by Wayne T Brown, the cast is comprised of Delena Gabbidon (Ms Quickly), Jo Lainchbury (Mother), Rachel Wilmshurst (Rosalind), Steph Ammerlaan (Helena), Gabbie Love (Ophelia), Charlotte Clarke (Cordelia), Shana Gabbidon-Williams (Julia) and Clare Dovey-Wilson (Phebe). The composer and pianist is Nia Williams.
These are, by necessity, short vignettes, but work pretty well. Ms Quickly walks briskly down the streets of London, Julia lounges by the beach. These women speak the verse vernacular you learned at school, but with a modern spin.
This show has the potential to grow and mine the other great women in Shakespeare’s plays, both comic and tragic. On the strength of these scenes, the full digital project will be well worth the time to watch.
Fringe rating: ***
Shakespeare (She/Her) is available until 27 June online at the Brighton Fringe. Book your free ticket to watch here.
For more about Three Chairs and a Hat visit their Facebook page.