Scan Magazine, Issue 90, July 2016

Page 90

The Shakespeare Festival will see a string of events and performances take place at the beautiful Kronborg Castle, the home of Hamlet. Photo: Rolf Konow.

Experience of the Month, Denmark

To be, or not to be in Elsinore As the world celebrates the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death, HamletScenen presents a spectacular programme of world-class performances set in the very home of Hamlet, Kronborg Castle. The beautiful renaissance castle in Elsinore, Denmark, has one of the world’s longest Shakespeare traditions and that, together with the playwright’s anniversary, is celebrated with a three-week-long Shakespeare festival in August. By Signe Hansen

To be, or not to be watching Shakespeare in Elsinore this summer – that is the question. Never has the opportunity to experience an enactment of the English playwright in the historic settings of his most famous play, Hamlet, been better. The resident theatre at Kronborg Castle, HamletScenen, is not just celebrating the 400th anniversary of William Shakespeare’s death but also 200 years since the first staging of a Shakespeare play at the castle. The productions, which 90 | Issue 90 | July 2016

take place in a magical courtyard of the UNESCO World Heritage Site castle, include a spectacular set-up of some of the best Shakespeare productions from all over the world. “Our artistic director, Lars Romann Engel, is always looking to present the best contemporary new Shakespeare productions from all over the world. However, a very important deciding factor is that it has to be a production that will

work outside as all performances take place in the castle courtyard of Hamlet’s home,” explains HamletScenen’s communications manager, Camilla Høg, and adds: “It’s a very authentic experience: the performance begins in daylight and the whole area contributes to the atmosphere. You can hear the seagulls above the castle, the waves when its windy, and every half an hour the bell tower strikes. You are sat right in the midst of the story.” Before the play, visitors can enjoy a relaxed picnic on the castle mounds.

Hamlet’s castle in Elsinore In 1604, Shakespeare published the final version of his pioneering renaissance tragedy, a story about the Danish prince, Hamlet. Shakespeare set the story, which was based on an ancient Danish legend about honour killings, at Denmark’s

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