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Superintendent Listening Post

I Hate Shakespeare premieres April 26th


Mayo High School Stage Door’s presentation of Steph Daferie’s I Hate Shakespeare debuts today, April 26th. Shakespeare is a tough subject for most high school students, but this play hopes to help teenagers understand his work a little better by providing spoofs on many of Shakespeare’s most famous titles and characters, ranging from Hamlet to Romeo and Juliet to Macbeth, but it presents them in a more modern and understandable way.

The play itself follows a teenager who comes in with a preconceived bias, believing that Shakespeare is awful. He follows Hamlet as they travel through stories and skits that highlight the good things about Shakespeare, justifying why he is an important and worthy figure in the history of literature. Because all of the scenes don’t exactly relate to each other but all loosely follow a main story, the overall plot is very loose. Instead, the skits are everything. Sound Crew Lead Luca Presa said, “It reminds me of the Monty Python films, only it’s done by high schoolers.” 

The play I Hate Shakespeare was first performed by Chatham Middle School Drama Club in 2008 and has since been performed by drama departments and production companies in over 700 other schools. The comedic aspects of the play are one of its largest draws and part of why it is a play chosen by Mayo Stage Door Productions. The stage Manager Julia Sanchez, who has four years of managing experience noted, “It is different from shows we have done in the past, as it is a much more lighthearted show… it is fun, and it is goofy.” Her sister and the other stage manager Sophie Sanchez agreed, saying that her favorite part was the humor. She quipped, “I like a lot of the dumb humor in the show. There is a lot of dumb humor.” It makes Shakespeare more easily digestible. Even if you don’t know anything about Shakespearean theater, there are still parts of this play you are sure to enjoy.

William Shakespeare, the man to whom the play owes its name, was an English playwright in the late 1500s and early 1600s. Married to Anne Hathaway at the age of 18, he had three children, wrote 38 influential plays, and is widely considered the greatest playwright of all time. He shared ownership of The Globe Theater, was a member of the acting company, the Lord Chamberlain’s Men. He invented or coined over 1,700 words that are still used today in English, words like gossip, addiction, and bedazzled. During the play, a British literary historian goes over some of this information plus a ton of additional interesting information.

If you missed the teasers presented throughout the school day on Tuesday, or if you want to see the play in its entirety, opening night of I Hate Shakespeare is tonight, April 26th at 7pm. That performance will be followed by a performance the next night, once again at 7pm. There will then be a final performance on Sunday, April 28th at 1:30 pm. Tickets are selling fast, so if you want to see it, then buy your tickets soon! They can be purchased off of the Hometown ticket app or website using this link:

We hope to see you there.

Photos Courtesy of Mayo Stage Door Productions

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