Vance-Granville Community College Drama students will present a production of Paul Rudnick’s comedy, “I Hate Hamlet,” on campus, November 21-24. Performances begin on Thursday, Nov. 21 at 7:30 p.m.; Friday, Nov. 22 at 7:30 p.m.; Saturday, Nov. 23 at 2 p.m. and at 7:30 p.m.; and on Sunday, Nov. 24 at 2 p.m. All performances are in the small auditorium in Building 2 on the college’s Main Campus in Henderson.
The play, which was first produced on Broadway in 1991, centers on the character of Andrew Rally, a successful actor whose television series has just been cancelled but now has the chance to star in the title role of Shakespeare’s Hamlet in Central Park. The only problem: he has no desire to play Hamlet. Meanwhile, he moves into a New York City apartment that was once home to actor John Barrymore (1882–1942). When Andrew’s agent visits him, she reminisces about her brief romance with Barrymore many years ago, in the apartment. This prompts a séance to summon Barrymore’s ghost. From the moment Barrymore returns, dressed in high Shakespearean garb, Andrew’s life is no longer his own. Barrymore presses Andrew to accept the part of Hamlet and fulfill his actor’s destiny, but Andrew’s deal-making friend from Los Angeles arrives, offering him a fabulous new TV deal worth millions. The laughs are non-stop as Andrew wrestles with his conscience, Barrymore, his sword, and the prospect of his failure as Hamlet.
The cast includes VGCC students Spencer Nunn of Warrenton, Cody Trivette of Oxford, Mark Tillotson of Oxford, Joy Chalmers of Oxford, Cameron Kester of Bullock, and Cathy Stephens of Franklinton.
Betsy Henderson, the VGCC Theatre Arts/speech instructor and department chair of Fine Arts and Humanities, directs the play.
Admission is $10 for the general public, and $5 for students, VGCC faculty and staff, and seniors. Tickets may be purchased at the door, but attendees are encouraged to secure their seats by making reservations. For more information and to reserve seats, contact Betsy Henderson at email@example.com or (252) 738-3371.