May 30 / 37th at 8pm
In a few weeks we re-enact the events of Romeo and Juliet.
Or rather: we re-enact the night Shakespeare’s brother saw the play for the second time. An unknown but important event.
We have seen what he saw. We have reconstructed it. You will see what he saw. How he saw it.
The same audience. Some will be our actors, some will be game members of the public trained up in secret recently, and some will be the ghosts of some of the very people there that night. Albeit they will be possessing unsuspecting members of our public audience member team. The ghosts have done a grand job, with huge language and communication problems.
Got to hand it to them (but they drop things).
They suffered terrible culture-shock and time-travel lag to be here, now, in the present.
Most of them have been hanging around in the early twenty fourth century where they were being treated like celebrities by a new Shakespeare-loving cult who could actually see them.
We did have to be firm about some of their vociferous and unruly demands to actually be in the play rather than just embodied in the audience but ghosts cant be choosers. Literally! They have trouble with stage directions for a start. And they got choosy about who they would possess too – and made complaints about our actors not making accurate…heavens, it was like ‘Elizabethans have Got Talent’ all over again.
They think us Moderns are such soft touches as dreams are made on and off.
For reasons of authenticity we need you to turn up a week before on May 23 at the Elizabethan doctor’s surgery and slum we have replicated next door. We will be giving you kidney trouble, a limp in the left leg and profound deafness in the right ear.
The ghost of Dwayne Shakespeare swears he suffered at the time with Trumpington’s Galloping Chorea Syndrome, which affects the ability to read computer screens. We can find no evidence for this. He can read one perfectly today – he answered our website ad last year.
And we dont have the funds so we will not be supplying you with this ailment. Malingering students or I.T. people (or resting actors) looking for doctor’s notes, beware!
There is a limited supply of ear trumpets as Shakespeare will not be clear about whether he used one. Ghosts have almost supernaturally good hearing yet bad memories for sound whilst actually living, and the other original members of the audience are forgetful.
It was quite a night, and nobody at that time knew who Dwayne was, he wasnt cool. It was only when Will got famous…
Modern or Elizabethan cures for the ailments are optional, available at the end of the night. Or at the end of your actual life (depending on how long the night is extended within the re-enactment). A limited number of cures can be re-enacted by a cast of acting surgeons at a later date – subject to availability; and ability to pay at the point of delivery.
And all two hundred of you will be sat in the back of the stalls, Seat 34H. This will require a magnificent feat of modern engineering combining computers, holography and the latest cutting-edge, high-speed place-changing telekinesis technology.
We will supply you with movement-sickness tablets but you wont notice a thing and the tablets will not interfere with your rich and rewarding experience of the other ailments throughout the evening.
Even though you will all be rapidly changing places between Seat 34H and the cloakrooms where we have set up the equipment.
Some scientists say telekinesis is impossible. We invite you to judge for yourselves.
We have worked hard with believers and sceptics alike – and playwrights – to make it work.
And you will believe it.
Shakespearean audiences believed in it by and large, once they had been informed about it. Although they had different explanations for it than us – such as Saturn, Mars, humours, the pineal gland etc.
Thank God for Shakespeare and his expansion of the English vocabulary.
We need your support. A sizeable chunk of our Arts Council grant went on keeping both the Departments of Health and that of Immigration very quiet. We live on baked beans.
And a great Elizabethan recipe for giblets – well, it tastes good as long as you remain in character.
Anyone found trying to record or film the evening or take notes – or for that matter concentrating hard and looking as if they can memorise events – for the purposes of making a future re-enactment of our evening, will be ejected from the building and sued.
We will then offer them well-paid employment, funded by the litigation, in one of our other projects, if it looks as if they have talent.
So come and participate.
Friday 30 Oct / 37 Oct 8pm
The New All Mouth Frenzington Globe
Price: Two Elizabethan Guineas – exchange rate extremely variable at present, so pray for a stronger pound.