The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (Abridged): All 37 Plays in 97 MInutes
No knowledge of Shakespeare is necessary to enjoy this madcap comedy, in which three guys in tights set out to perform all 37 of the playwright's works in less than 100 minutes, with hilarious results. These theater classics undergo some changes, of course. Titus Andronicus becomes a cooking show, Othello is summarized in rap, Macbeth turns from tragedy into broad comedy and Hamlet is pared down to less than a minute. Originally created by the Reduced Shakespeare Company and first performed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, the show ran for almost a decade in London and has since traveled all over the world before landing here to wrap up the Camino Real Playhouse's 24th season.
Widely hailed on its first publication in 1951, the Complete Works of William Shakespeare edited by Professor Peter Alexander has long been established as one of the most authoritative editions of Shakespeares works. Now completely reset in a reader-friendly format, it continues to provide a reliable and straightforward text for the reader. This updated edition includes a brief biography of Shakespeare by Germaine Greer and an introduction to his theater by Anthony Burgess; new introductions to the plays and poems written by a team from Glasgow University; an essay on the significance of the Alexander text; and a glossary with 2,500 words and phrases.
I don’t blame the actors – not entirely. The Colorado Shakespeare Festival must shoulder some of the blame. Most of it, really. They set this Boschean nightmare into motion back in February, when they asked me to direct The Complete Works of William Shakespeare, surely the grandest undertaking in the history of the English-speaking theatre, bigger than Nicholas Nickleby, bigger than The Mahabharata, bigger than The Kentucky Cycle – and then asked me to accomplish this epic feat with a cast of three. That’s not a typo. Three (3). It’s egregious.