Monday, October 25, 2004

'Kung Fu' a very different spin on Shakespeare

October 22, 2004


The fancy footwork and the equally fancy word magic of Shakespeare meld in Will Kern's action-packed Shakespeare Kung Fu. Best known for the long-running "Hellcab," the playwright weaves a tale of betrayal and revenge created out of lines and short passages from all of Shakespeare's plays and a few sonnets.

Because he's lifting all the dialogue, Kern says he has trouble taking a writing credit. "I put the story together and I created the characters out of the words, but none of the words are mine. I think Shakespeare would have liked it, though."

Marc A. Nelson directs the Mary-Aarchie Theatre production. Previews are Wednesday and Thursday, with opening night set for Oct. 29. Performances continue through Dec. 11 at the Storefront Theater, 66 E. Randolph. Tickets: (312) 742-8497.
Seeing Shakespeare through Japanese eyes
Director Yukio Ninagawa brings his own take on Hamlet to Scotland this week, writes Ben Walters

For a land and culture often deemed to be enigmatic and unknowable, Japanese treatments of Shakespeare can be surprisingly illuminatory experiences. From Akira Kurosawa’s King Lear-based film, Ran, to the RSC’s Japan-flavoured production of Coriolanus last year, the land of the rising sun and England’s bard have proved to be intriguing bedfellows.