Part of interview with actor Geoff Sobelle about his gritty performance as Hamlet
(photo Jeffrey Stockbridge)
Geoff : It really felt like the whole thing has been a mad dash to the finish. We had four weeks, which is much quicker for me. But, I had been doing research, sort of, about how one performs Hamlet, in my mind a long time, though. I don’t do Shakespeare a lot, and I hadn’t done classical theater in 5 years, since I was in As You Like It at the Lantern. (The director) Charles McMahon approached me a year and a half ago about doing it.
Most of my work is in the experimental or avant garde genre. When Charles and I first got together after talking, talking, talking…we attempted to do the play with no words. I did Hamlet’s experience as a series of physical impulses. We didn’t know what that would be I just thought I need to get in there someway.
Hamlet exists as a whole, really, so it is difficult to jump in with a microscope and look at bits and pieces without feeling the whole arc. So we spent days doing that.
When I work with Pig Iron we always talk about what is ‘the world of the show’; What are the rules in this world? I tried to come to it thinking about the ways the character can reveal himself. It was actually good to let this go in a way. All of these suppositions and what people hang onto about the play, we put all that aside.