alibi online
Free Will AstrologyAlibi's Personals



 
 V.15 No.14 | April 6 - 12, 2006 

Performance Review

Sucks So Good

Hamlet: The Vampire Slayer at Gorilla Tango Comedy Theatre

Could this be love? Hamlet sure thinks so.
Could this be love? Hamlet sure thinks so.

Albuquerque has Hamlet on the brain. An excellent traditional staging of the play is now showing at the Vortex Theatre (see Performance Review, “The Prince of Darkness,” March 30-April 5). Meanwhile, over at Gorilla Tango Comedy Theatre, the wackjob jokers from the Eat, Drink and Be Larry comedy troupe have masterminded a—how shall I put this?—somewhat less traditional late-night version of Shakespeare's Danish revenge saga.

The GT show is called Hamlet: The Vampire Slayer. I caught the opening night performance last Friday evening. In an odd way, it serves as a perfectly demented companion piece to the Vortex show. I highly recommend seeing both.

The traditional Hamlet over at the Vortex is an adept, respectful rendering. Hamlet: The Vampire Slayer, on the other hand, features the Danish prince as an enthusiastic high school cheerleader and his Uncle Claudius—excuse me, Claudio—as a spicy Latino salsa master with a genuine taste for human blood.

I loved almost everything about The Vampire Slayer. The show is what we in the theater criticism business call “good stupid.” The script by director Jason Witter and his fellow Eat, Drink and Be Larry scribe Aaron Frale is an unlikely combination of sharp references to Shakespeare's plays with hilarious sprinklings from popular culture. The bare bones set (consisting primarily of a red piano bench) along with the bare bones lighting (consisting mainly of a dimmer switch) are used with dynamic ingeniousness throughout. The choreography is exceptionally inspired. The music is rockin'.

Witter got some great performances from this talented cast, too. In a way, this is a much tighter ensemble performance than the one over at the Vortex, where Tricklocker Chad Brummett's Hamlet is such an inspired and dominant presence that he sometimes overshadows his accomplished supporters.

Here fellow Tricklocker Kevin R. Elder's Hamlet is also excellent, but he melds seamlessly with fantastic performances by Doug Montoyo (Claudio), Ethan Moya (Romeo), Shannon Rogers (Juliet, Buffy), George Bach (Horatio), Leslie Nesbit (Ophelia, Lady Macbeth) and Summer Olsson (Gertrude). The arrival near the end of the show of Nick Lopez (Macbeth) and Andy Brooks (Othello) as maverick vampire slayers made my stomach hurt I laughed so hard. When Laertes (Alex Knight) shows up for the thrilling Napoleon Dynamite-esque finale, I wanted to stand up and cheer.

Funny, funny stuff. Seriously. And it's only playing for two more evenings. Do the Hamlet combo in a single weekend. You'll never see Shakespeare the same way again.

Hamlet: The Vampire Slayer runs through April 8 at Gorilla Tango Comedy Theatre (519 Central NW). Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. $8. 245-8600, www.gorillatango.com.


Today's Events

A Christmas Story (1983) at KiMo Theatre

Reel World

Classic film about 9-year-old Ralphie and what he wants for Christmas: a BB gun.

THE SHOW at Box Performance Space and Improv Theatre

The Nutcracker Ballet in the Land of Enchantment at National Hispanic Cultural Center

More Recommented Events ››
Join our mailing list for exclusive info, the week's events and free stuff!
 

  • Select sidebar boxes to add below. You can also click and drag to rearrange the boxes; close using the little X icons on each box. To re-add a box you closed, return to this menu.
  • Because you are not logged in, any changes you make to these boxes will vanish as soon as you click to another page. If you log in, the boxes will stick.
  • alibi.com
  • Web Exclusives
  • Recent Rocksquawk Discussions
  • Recent Classifieds
  • Most Active Users
  • Most Active Stories
  • Calendar Comments
  • Albuquerque
  • Duke City Fix
  • Albuquerque Beer Scene
  • What's Wrong With This Picture?
  • Reddit Albuquerque
  • ABQ Journal Metro
  • ABQrising
  • ABQ Journal Latest News
  • Del.icio.us Albuquerque
  • NM and the West
  • New Mexico FBIHOP
  • Democracy for New Mexico
  • Only in New Mexico
  • Mario Burgos
  • Democracy for New Mexico
  • High Country News
  • El Grito
  • NM Politics with Joe Monahan
  • Stephen W. Terrell's Web Log
  • The Net Is Vast and Infinite
  • Slashdot
  • Freedom to Tinker
  • Is there a feed that should be on this list? Tell us about it.
LowLife Happy Hour
LowLife Happy Hour12.26.2014