William Shakespeares Long Lost First Play (abridged)
Melville Theatre presents
William Shakespeares Long Lost First Play (abridged)

19 Nov 2021 to 4 Dec 2021

SHAKESPEARES long-lost first play, written when he was 17, is coming to Melville Theatre after being found in a treasure-filled English parking lot.

The literary holy grail features Shakespeares most famous characters and familiar speeches in a new story. 

But at 100 hours with multiple unwieldy storylines, it was decided by writers Reed Martin and Austin Tichenor to abridge it as a public service to a brief and palatable 90-minute performance.

Vanessa Jensen is directing William Shakespeare's Long Lost First Play (abridged), a fast, funny and fictional 40th play by the Bard that weaves together his popular speeches and plot devices.

This is Shakespeare without really being Shakespeare, she said. Its funny, a bit silly and filled with references to pop culture, Disney and many of Shakespeares most famous characters. 

Three actors give a physical and frantic performance playing many roles and changing numerous costumes, voices and accents, while also occasionally playing musical instruments frequently all at the same time!

The main challenge, according to Vanessa, is reassuring non-Shakespeare fans that they dont need to know or like his work to enjoy the show.

We also dont want to offend true Shakespeare aficionados with the way the great Bards work is twisted and turned inside out for the sake of humour, she said.

The play, with its multitude of characters, costumes and accents, needs to be carefully choreographed and managed to ensure the flow is smooth and the audience can keep up.

First appearing on stage as an eight-year-old and directing her first show at 14, Vanessa has a wealth of theatre experience behind her. 

She wrote, directed, stage-managed and acted in various shows at Curtin Universitys Hayman Theatre over a four-year period and has staged a plethora of successful productions at the Old Mill and Melville Theatres. 

Vanessa has plenty of best director and best play awards and nominations to her credit for shows including Away, Jamies Chooks, Twelve Angry Men, Mr Baileys Minder, Amadeus, Rabbit Hole and Love, Loss and What I Wore.

William Shakespeare's Long Lost First Play (abridged) appealed because its clever and funny, she said. 

It has Shakespeare, which I like; Disney, which I love; pig latin, which was my second language as a child, and it contains some truly terrible puns whats not to love?

William Shakespeares Long Lost First Play (abridged) is on at 8pm November 19, 20, 25, 26, 27, December 2, 3 and 4 with a 2pm matinee November 28. Tickets are $23, $18 concession book at www.TAZTix.com.au

Melville Theatre is at 393A Canning Highway (corner of Stock Road), Palmyra.

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Venue
Melville Theatre
Session TimesTicket PricesDuration
120 mins
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