Coronado School of the Arts (CoSA) Musical Theatre & Drama conservatory has staged a production of “Rosencranz and Guildenstern are Dead” by Tom Stoppard for their winter performance.
The production director is Levi Kaplan and the show’s stage manager is CoSA student, sophomore Maya Bell.
In summary, the play follows the two minor characters from Hamlet when they are not appearing in Hamlet. Indeed the show was a total absurdist and existential production that was comedic, yet tragic at the same time. The lead characters, played by Lauryn McGuire and Sydney Zuckerman, did a fantastic job and basically never left the stage for the almost-three-hour length of the show.
The show started off in the lobby of all places. As you were waiting to be let in at 7 pm, the troupe of actors stormed into the Black Box lobby. They sang, danced, shook tambourines, and more. This introduction started the show off with a bang. After the actors fled the lobby, you were let into the theater for seating. The two main characters were already onstage, curtains drawn, and were pacing the set.
The show was very interactive. As an audience member watching, you felt like you were a part of the story. As a whole the show was very unorthodox and the performance was not limited to just the stage. For example, actors were sitting in the audience and breaking the fourth wall constantly. In addition, the actors made it feel like they were talking to the audience while they posed philosophical questions ranging from memory to the meaning of life.
There was no lack of wittiness from the characters. Without a doubt Rosencranz and Guildenstern’s chemistry was unmatched. Again and again the actors bantered with such quick speed. Concurrently, all of the actors had impeccable comedic timing. Many audience members couldn’t contain their laughter throughout the night. Multiple actors in the show played different parts, demonstrating their creative skills as actors by switching from being in the band of players to a character in Hamlet.
Even though the play was full of humorous remarks, it covers plenty of very beautiful topics with Shakespearean style language. The long monologues helped cover the intense plot the play follows and were a great way to balance out the comedic aspects of the show. As a member of the audience you really had to pay attention to all the one-of-a-kind details dispersed throughout the play. Characters arcs were unfolding and you saw actors cover all ranges of depth.
All in all it was a very unique experience. The CoSA actors showed their bravery and passion for their art yet again and the performances put on by these students are proof of their young talent. Each CoSA show is a special experience and in addition to students, faculty, and family members, community members are encouraged to attend.