As You Like It – What’s Not to Like?

Courtesy+of+Charlotte+Gemperle+%2718
Courtesy of Charlotte Gemperle '18

Courtesy of Charlotte Gemperle '18

Courtesy of Charlotte Gemperle '18

Charlotte Gemperle '18, Arts & Entertainment Section Editor

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Unrequited love. Wrestling. Singing. Somersaults. How can all these things be related? Leave it to Shakespeare!

 

In Marymount’s production of the Shakespearean comedy As You Like It, Duke Senior is exiled to the Forest of Arden after being overthrown by his younger brother, Duke Frederick. Despite her father’s banishment, Rosalind, our young protagonist, continues to live in court with her beloved cousin Celia. When Orlando, the son of Sir Rowland De Boys, defeats Charles the Wrestler in Duke Frederick’s wrestling match, he woos Rosalind while incurring the wrath of Duke Frederick. Learning that his older brother, Oliver, plans to kill him, Orlando escapes to the Forest. Duke Frederick then banishes Rosalind from the court, and she too seeks refuge in the Forest with Celia and Touchstone, the court fool, while disguised as a man named Ganymede. When Rosalind and Orlando meet again in the Forest, their love intensifies, and with other interwoven love interests, the story becomes more complicated before it can be resolved.

 

In this vibrant and hysterical masterpiece, Marymount boasts a talented cast. Caroline Hawley’s (‘19) seamless transitions from Rosalind to Ganymede and portrayal of both a comedic and heartfelt character succeeded in stealing the audience’s hearts – not just Orlando’s.  Lilly Brodie-Berge (‘19), playing Touchstone, never failed to crack the audience up with her natural comedic ability and impressive, well-timed somersaults. Finally, Lauren Blair (‘19) put on a convincing performance as Orlando, leaving the audience gasping with suspense in her stage-combat wrestling scene.   

 

The costumes, intriguing on their own, brought an extra layer of depth both to the characters and to the show as a whole. After careful collaboration between director Claire Hackett and costume designer Ela Jo Erwin, they collectively decided not to dress the actors in the traditional Renaissance clothing typical of Shakespearean times; instead, they took inspiration from Japanese and African cultures, introducing intricate patterns and eye-popping headpieces. The contrast of delicate pastels and bold, extravagant colors brought the characters to life before our eyes.

 

Working on an octagonal stage that Marymount’s talented crew constructed from scratch, the audience was treated to a more intimate, 360-degree view of the production, making the actors’ facial expressions and body language that much more memorable.

With hypnotizing acting, knee-slapping comedy, and even a little singing and dancing, there was nothing not to like about Marymount’s As You Like It.

Courtesy of Charlotte Gemperle ’18

Courtesy of Charlotte Gemperle ’18

Courtesy of Charlotte Gemperle ’18

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As You Like It – What’s Not to Like?