Three Chairs and a Hat’s Shakespeare’s (She/Her), directed by Wayne T Brown, is a short collection of Shakespearean monologues and verse all performed by women, in contemporary settings. Utilising reality TV, mobile phones and subtle references to today’s climate, it is a varied compilation of well performed pieces.
The show opens with Delena Gabbidon’s witty and devious portrayal of Ms Quickly. Swiftly changing her clothes before speaking, Gabbidon creates a clandestine atmosphere as she reveals the secrets of the people around her, taking her on a rollercoaster of emotions supported by strong body language and mime.
We are then taken to a beautiful park with birds, animals and a mother (Jo Lainchbury) playing happily with her child as she narrates Sonnet 15. This is a peaceful and beautiful piece which delicately captures the spirit of the poem.
Rachel Wilmhurst’s portrayal of Rosalind is original and charming. A bandaged face partially hidden by sunglasses and an empty wine bottle are paired with a strong northern accent and maniacal reactions to Orlando’s love letters, creating a sense of confusion and vulnerability rarely seen in the role.
Gabbie Love adds a musical touch to Ophelia which creates a desperate sense of sadness, which is heightened with Charlotte Clarke’s emotional performance as Cordelia. Steph Ammerlaan’s desperate Helena contrasts with Clare Dovey-Wilson’s sun kissed Phebe and Shana Gabbidon-Williams’ nonchalant Julia, displaying the wide range of emotions brought to life by Shakesepare’s female characters. Shakespeare (She/Her) is a rapidly moving collection which holds the promise of great things to go from the forthcoming full-length project.
Shakespeare (She/Her) is being streamed by Brighton Fringe until 27 June 2021. Tickets are available here https://www.brightonfringe.org/whats-on/shakespeare-sheher-153672/
Reviewer: Donna M Day
Reviewed: 22 June 2021
North West End UK Rating: ★★★★