(Un)Dead Week

It’s Dead Week on UA’s campus, but that doesn’t mean that there’s nothing going on.  It just means that there could be an Elizabethan Zombiepocalypse going on and you wouldn’t know it because you’re hiding out on the fourth floor of Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library.  Which might be a good place to hide during the Zombiepocalypse.  Zombies don’t need books.

Then again, the library will be packed this week.  Prime zombie real estate.  You should go outside occasionally, just to make sure that the end isn’t nigh and that your papers are still due.

Here are a few events you may want to step outside for:

Milton’s Paradise Regain’d
The Green Bar
Monday @ 7:00pm, free and open to all ages
Tuesday @ 7:00pm, 21 and up

Professor David Ainsworth’s EN 335 class will be reading Milton’s dramatic poem at the little stage formerly known as Little Willy’s, next door to Wilhagen’s.  This event may be your only chance to drink good canned beer while listening to religious poetry.  Ever.  Or at least before the Zombiepocalypse.

Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Shelton State Community College
The Courtyard (of Shelton’s campus)
Tuesday through Thursday, 7:30pm
Free admission.

Outdoor Shakespeare.  A good (and entertaining) way to see the zombies coming from a distance.  And the tornadoes (show canceled on Wednesday night).  Be sure to check out the review at Vanishing Sights.

David Bolus’ blackout.
The Allen Bales, UA Campus
Wednesday and Thursday, 7:30pm
$5 admission, proceeds benefit The National Foundation for Cancer Research as part of “Play for a Purpose”, as well as West Alabama AIDS Outreach.

David Bolus recently played Hamlet for Improbable Fictions.  While I don’t think we can expect sword fights or skulls from blackout, I think that there will be more than enough soul-searching dialogue to go around.  A good thing, soul-searching, right before the Zombiepocalypse.

And last (and certainly least)

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Undead
301 Morgan Hall
Sunday, May 1st, 7:00pm
Free and open.

I’ve heard that this film is horrible.  Just bad.  I’m hoping for mystery-science-theatre-bad.  If I have any brain cells left after this week, I hope to burn them on this film.


Hamlet: Pics and Programs

Horatio (Amber Gibson) and Hamlet (David Bolus)

Thanks to cast, crew, and audience for making last night’s staged reading of Hamlet a thrilling evening.  I’m posting the program notes below.  As you can see in these pics (more pics here), the cast took advantage of the whiteboard in 214 Farrah Hall to write lines, maxims, and jokes, a cloud of words and ideas that formed both a humorous and a haunting backdrop for the performance.

“To be or not to be.” It’s perhaps Shakespeare’s best-known line. Yet

it’s so often read simply as “To live or to die.” As if death was a

simple way out. As if we could so easily escape our regrets.

Hamlet is a young university student who leaves home with his life in complete order: his parents love him, his girlfriend adores him, and the world makes sense. He is a prince, and his only limit is the stretch of his imagination. Then the news arrives. “Come home, Hamlet. Your father is dead.” Hamlet rushes back to Elsinore, but he’s too late for the funeral. His father lies in the cold ground, and no one seems to mourn his passing. His mother remarries soon after. Even his girlfriend Ophelia seems distant: how can he talk to her? How can she understand?

He has regrets: If he hadn’t left home, could he have seen his father before he died? Could he have stopped his death? Did he make his father proud? Hamlet is living in the past. When his father dies, his world stops. He can’t move on. All he can do is remember. And regret lost opportunities. And then he hears his father’s voice: “Mark me. Revenge my foul and most unnatural murder. Remember me.” Here is Hamlet’s second chance: to prove his love to his father; to set things right; to change the past and erase his regrets. But living for the past has a high cost.

For tonight’s performance, the actors have written their own regrets and remembrances on the whiteboard. I encourage you to do the same. Before the show or at intermission, pick up a dry erase marker and make your own declaration.

To remember. To regret no more. To be.


Guildenstern (Jen Drouin), Hamlet (David Bolus), and Rosencrantz (Jonathan Hinnen)