Having spent my second year of university reading all of Shakespeare’s plays and as an avid fan of the movie ’10 Things I Hate About You’, I jumped at the chance to see the Melbourne Shakespeare Company’s summer production of The Taming of the Shrew.
The show takes place at the Rose Garden, the stunning centrepiece of the St Kilda Botanical Gardens, and we were treated to similarly beautiful weather, accentuating the bursts of colour blooming all around us. For each performance, the audience gets to decide who plays the Shrew and who plays the Tame, providing a unique twist and a different experience for every theatre-goer.
Written between 1590 and 1592, Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew is a comedy about the unconventional marriage between Petruchio and Katherine. Disreputable Petruchio is paid to woo cantankerous Katherine so that her younger sibling, Bianca/Bianco, is eligible for marriage.
While delivering a superb rendition of the original text, each cast member really made their character their own – infusing their own personality and comedic flair with that of Shakespeare’s vision. Live music and choreographed dance sequences featuring the whole ensemble added an extra element of creativity, while creating a carnival-like atmosphere.
For an afternoon of fun and frivolity, The Taming of the Shrew ticks all the boxes. Bring a picnic, bring the family and settle in for a jolly good time!
Charlotte Pordage is a writer/editor from the UK. When she’s not attending events, she can be found riding her horse Rudolph and enjoying a good cup of tea. View more of her work at charlotte pordage.com.
The Taming of the Shrew runs 7-22 December at St. Kilda Botanical Gardens, 11 Herbert Street, 2pm, 7pm (90 mins). Buy tickets now.
The venue is accessible.
Disclosure: The Plus Ones were invited guests of the Melbourne Shakespeare Company.
Image credit: Jack Dixon-Gunn