What does an actor do when his once-popular television show is canceled? For Andrew Rally, it is move to New York to portray a role actors consider the most challenging to perform, Hamlet. The only problem? It's not something he feels capable of doing. That is the setup for the latest play being performed by the Minot Area Theatrical Society, "I Hate Hamlet!"
Written by Paul Rudnick, the show takes place in the apartment of legendary actor John Barrymore. Rally's girlfriend is a major fan of Barrymore's and is insistent he take the role, and imagines herself Ophelia to his Hamlet. When his reluctance to play the titular character becomes abundantly clear, the ghost of John Barrymore, who many regard as the greatest performer of Hamlet, arrives to convince him otherwise.
The play, helmed by debut director Cassie Rech, stars Donald L. Pitsiladis in the role of Andrew Rally, Brandon Shafer as John Barrymore, Heidi Eidem as Andrew's girlfriend Deidre, Ed Montez as Gary (Andrew's producer friend from Los Angeles), Kayla Cote as Lillian (Andrew's agent), and Nicolette Eisenzimmer as Felicia (the broker who shows Andrew the apartment).
Donald Pitsiladis, left, as Andrew, rehearses a scene with Brandon Shafer as Barrymore in preparation for the opening of “I Hate Hamlet” tonight at The Vegas Motel.
Performances begin tonight and run through Sunday, with meals being served on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. The price of admission with a meal is $22 on Friday and Saturday and $17 on Sunday, or $10 for adults and $5 for seniors and children without the meal. The menu consists of a mushroom and bacon penne pasta dish on Friday, French dip and French fries on Saturday, and a club sandwich and chips on Sunday. All meals include salad and dessert. Reserve your seats now by calling 509-5215 and enjoy a night of laughs. Parents are warned, however, that the show does contain mild language and some adult themes.
(Nicolette Eisenzimmer is a member of the Minot Area Theatrical Society.)