King’s College will host an extraordinary exhibition by HamletScenen, the artistic institution at Kronborg Castle (the castle where most of Hamlet takes place) that upholds the Shakespearean theatrical tradition at Helsingør, or Elsinore. The exhibition, curated by our good old friend Anne Sophie Refskou, tells the story of Hamlet at Elsinore as 2016 marks – besides the fourth centennial of Shakespeare’s death – 200 years since the first performance of Hamlet at the castle.
The exhibition runs only from August 5-9, (Friday to Tuesday) at the Anatomy Museum (Strand Campus), with opening hours of 10am to 8pm.
Don’t miss it!
HamletScenen also hosts the Shakespeare Festival at Kronborg in August with many interesting productions – including our friends from the Flute Theatre performing their brilliant ‘Hamlet, Who’s There?’ (watch/listen to Kelly Hunter discussing the adaptation process). Check out their programme! More at HamletScenen.dk.
Here is Anne Sophie describing the exhibition:
The story of ´Hamlet at Elsinore´ is the story of how Shakespeare’s iconic play has been performed for centuries at a magnificent fortified castle, where the stone walls seem to have been imprinted with Shakespeare’s words, and where fiction and reality continue to merge into something evermore rich and strange.
In Hamlet a group of travelling players are enthusiastically welcomed by the prince. The real Elsinore welcomes travelling players with the same delight, and has indeed been doing so since the sixteenth century, when the Danish King Frederick II invited performers from abroad to his court; among these were English actors who were later to work alongside Shakespeare himself.
Historic events and conflicts have often formed part of the backdrop for performances at Kronborg; especially during the twentieth century when different nationalist interests in appropriating Hamlet and Shakespeare must have hung in the air over the great castle courtyard.
But above all, Kronborg’s Shakespearean connection has provided a unique opportunity for intercultural dialogue in multiple and multifaceted ways. Today this dialogue is as strong as ever – not least thanks to the ethos and work of HamletScenen.
This exhibition presents a selection of landmark performances of Hamlet and their historical contexts in a place where past, present and future converge, creating a Shakespearean stage which continues to welcome travelling players from all over the globe.
Dr. Anne Sophie Refskou, exhibition curator