27: Lady Hamlet

Frailty, thy name is woman! 

A line the talented and quite, quite female Lenne Klingaman must utter in the Colorado Shakespeare Festival’s Hamlet, in which she plays the title role.

A female Hamlet is rare. A female playing Hamlet as a FEMALE is even rarer. Lenne is doing both, and has been making national waves for her incredible work.

We are stoked.

As a Shakespearean actress/ Shakespeare mega-nerd, I (Angela) am jazzed. There is something so powerful about seeing a woman be allowed to take up so much space in classical theater -- to be so big and flawed and complex and vast. Hamlet is the everyman, and it’s about damn time she be the everywoman, too.

And as a Shakespeare fan/ mega feminist, I (Lindsay) am pretty in awe of the opportunity Lenne is having to defy gender and sexual norms as Hamlet.

Lenne posted this incredible message to Facebook after her first run through:

"..my brain and body are aswirl. Many many thoughts but one thing I come back to and am ever grateful for: I have never been so taxed so challenged so brought to bear so confounded so excited so demanded of so enticed by so many tools from my toolkit so many crayons to color with. And it's f$&king thrilling and terrifying. Is there a word for that? Because they go together hand in hand. I could probably write a thesis on this but I will try to sum up my thoughts: my eyes are open. We need more parts like this for women. I have never felt so free entirely. So far from the confines of gender and identity politics. I'm just living the character. Our definition of Woman is changing and we need to push it forward. It's time for women/womyn/and all and any who identify as such to be full to be free to be all we are. Our politics our societies our children are begging for it. We are fighters we are comedians we are beautiful we are ugly we are nasty we are polite we are brilliant we are idiots we are dangerous we are safe and we are all these things sometimes at once. This is not a new thought. But it can be a new fight; not against any person or people but rather for the greater good. That's all. I have Hamlet brain."

Cue tears.

There’s nothing more for us to say. We’ll let Lenne do it.

The official HAMLET trailer (above) and the bad ass fights of HAMLET (below).

 

xo, L + A

Angela Gulner