There was much to enjoy at The Lynn Hanse Festival last weekend (more on that later), but one event stands out for me as superb although not part of the Festival, and that was a production by the Librarian Theatre, of a shortened version of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, or a ‘rapid retelling’ as they describe it.
The company was established in 2015 by actors Tom Cuthbertson (also director) and Kelly Eva-May (who played Hamlet) and it’s purpose is to support and celebrate libraries, literature and literacy by creating accessible high quality productions especially designed to perform among the bookshelves! Funding for this excellent not- for-profit organisation is limited so if you can donate, or have information about relevant trusts please email to firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.librariantheatre.com
The production I saw was superb as the company used Lynn Library space creatively and, with a minimalist cast of Kelly as Hamlet, Keith Hill as Old Hamlet, Claudius and Polonius and Sarah Ratheram as Horatio, Gertrude and Ophelia, the tension and drama of the play was well maintained. The innovations used in the production (set in the 1920s or ’30s) worked for me, even Ophelia presented as a large doll was effective. As this was a shortened version of the play I did miss some of the verse, including Hamlet’s reference to ‘the undiscovered country’, never mind!
Hanse weekend was a grand success. I enjoyed much of the entertainment and was glad the concert given by The Chanot Ensemble and Michael Hankinson was well attended. Well done to all involved for their hard work whatever aspect of the weekend they were involved in.
Another musical success last weekend was achieved by Lynn Festival Chorus at Norfolk Showground Arena when they took part with other choirs in a performance of Mahler’s Symphony of a Thousand with The Norwich Philharmonic Orchestra and Chorus. Please view the Festival Chorus website for details of future concerts (the next on July 19, includes music by Vaughan Williams and Rutter) and details of how to join this excellent body
By the time you read this column the details of Festival Too gigs should have been announced and we will know how to fill some of our evenings during late June and early July. As I write it’s all a mystery!
I have heard from the Fox and Hounds at Heacham of an exciting second ‘Summer of Jazz’ session on Sunday, June 5 between 1.30-4pm. Popular singer Laura Rimmer will feature and she will be backed by her favourite musicians The Sounds Easy Trio. The gig will be a varied one and food will be available via the restaurant. Entrance is free. Sounds cool!
And so to art. The Dersingham Art Trail opens this Bank Holiday and there is an invitation from Steve and Margaret Martyn to visit their garden and Stephen’s Studio this Sunday and Monday between 11 am-5pm. Other artists are taking part in the trail so give Steve a call on 01485 541333 for more details. Art and garden.
From Sunday through to June 12, dozens of artists will be taking part in the Norfolk and Norwich Festival Open Studios event and I recommend you visit www.nnopenstudios.org.uk to find what’s happening in our area.
Lastly on this busy weekend a message from David Jackson, Bagman for The King’s Morris to say that dancing will be held this Monday, 11 am at Bircham Windmill ( there will be a charge for this event) and then 12.30pm at Burnham Thorpe’s Lord Nelson and finally 2pm at The Globe in Wells-Next-The-Sea. The dancers certainly get around!