As previous participants, Matoaca High School’s Actor’s Studio returned to the 2014 “Bardathon” sponsored by Richmond Shakespeare at Center Stage. They performed two student-directed scenes from “Hamlet.” Nine area schools and one Russian Theater Troupe participated in this year’s Bardathon. Richmond Shakespeare chooses which of Shakespeare’s plays will be performed and participating schools are each assigned different scenes to present, in whatever style they choose. On performance day, all groups gather at the Gottwald Playhouse of Center Stage and put the show together, scene by scene. “It’s exciting to see the play come to life with each school’s interpretation. The kids did some amazing work!” says Jana Farrell, Matoaca’s Theater Teacher.
With the Matoaca girls taking one scene and the boys taking another, each group decided to add an interpretive twist: “Superheroes” for the girls and “Back to the Future” for the guys. Both groups incorporated gender-switching. “We decided to do a rendition where women played men, basically switching how Shakespeare had men play women’s roles,” said Devin DeLozier, director of the girl’s group.
“The Bardathon is great, getting people together to tackle Shakespeare and act on behalf of their school. We get to showcase our acting in a comfortable environment,” said Patric Cox who played Hamlet in the boy’s group.