Thursday, June 22, 2017

Dramatis Personae: HIDry V

Summer is about to heat up. And the source of the rising temperatures is right here. Welcome to the world of #HIDryV. This is an all-female, combat-heavy, music-infused festivity that you're not going to want to miss. The fight for France is on, and these strong, clever, and wise warriors are here to bring it to you. Prepare to meet your new role models.

Hamlet Isn't Dead presents:

William Shakespeare's



Abigaile Slocum as Bardolph
April Glick as Pistol
Caroline Osborn as Katharine
Charlotte Harvey as the King of France
Claire Alexander as Exeter
Erica Huang as Gower
Kelly Karcher* as Westmoreland
Megan Greener^ as Henry V

Mia Cain^ as the Chorus
Olivia Cygan* as Montjoy
Paige Espinosa as the Dauphin
Samantha Maurice*^ as the Queen of France
Valerie Terranova* as Fluellen

This stunning cast is led and directed by the incomprable Dr. Valerie Clayman Pye, whom you can (and should) read more about here. And join all these HIDiots this summer for Henry V like you've never seen, heard, or felt it before.
Tickets will be available soon. Check back for more info!

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*appearing courtesy of Actor's Equity Association
^ Hamlet Isn't Dead Resident Acting Company Member 2017 

Thursday, June 8, 2017

HIDtroducing: Dr. Valerie Clayman Pye.

Hi, everyone! Hamlet Isn't Dead's Artistic Director David Andrew Laws here. I couldn't think of a clever hook or angle to bring you into this article (that's kind of our M.O. marketing-wise), but this is a really exciting announcement! So I thought I'd kick it back to the past with a good old-fashioned blog post and introduce to you the facts of the situation. (And isn't that deviation from the norm, in its own way, a clever hook? Alright, enough of that. On to the facts.)

Hamlet Isn't Dead is thrilled to introduce Dr. Valerie Clayman Pye, who will be directing our summer production of an all-female Henry V!

Dr. Pye (or, Valerie, as she insists we call her, but c'mon) is uh-MAZing. End of blog post. Go home.

No, but seriously, it is rare to meet an artist with whom we click so immediately, but Dr. Pye tuned into Hamlet Isn't Dead's ethos from the very start. From speaking with her in person to watching her speak at her book signing, it's been immediately clear that she leans toward the clever, clear, fourth-wall-demolishing brand of Shakespeare that we've championed for the past four years. Let's look into some of the nitty-gritty, shall we?

First of all, Valerie Pye has her MFA in Staging Shakespeare. How much more apropos can you get?? You're looking for a director, and someone goes, 'Hey, I have a degree in doing exactly that with exactly that guy's works'. How are you gonna top that? Well, how about with her PhD in Performance Practice??? Yup! Aaaaand she has an MFA in Acting, so you know she's good at communicating with her cast. How many degrees is that now? Valerie loves learning so much, she'd marry it if the current administration weren't so closed-minded. She's also kind enough to share the fruits of all that education at LIU, where she teaches acting and voice & speech. Those lucky kids....

Now, not only can she talk the talk, but you can walk a mile in Shakespeare's shoes thanks to her book, Unearthing Shakespeare, which is "the first book to look at what the Globe can teach us about performing Shakespeare anywhere". It's an amazing resource filled with exercises and insight you won't find anywhere else. Whether you're a scholar, a student, or anyone in between, you should do yourself a favor and click the link above.

And beyond all of that, past all the training and the accolades and the scholarship, Valerie's just a kind, lovely person with whom we're tremendously excited to be working. We know she's going to take wonderful care of our actors, of our production, and of the audience this summer. It's going to be a hot one (both in and out of the theatre), so stay cool, we'll bring you more details as they unfold.

Thanks for tuning in, HIDiots. Make sure you're ready for a powerful plethora of fighting females as Hamlet Isn't Dead presents Shakespeare's Henry V opening at Westbeth on July 29th.

All the best,
David Andrew Laws
Artistic Director, Hamlet Isn't Dead