Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Last week, I went to a free Hamlet staging at the World Financial Center. The uniqueness of this performance was in the fact that the entire building complex of the Financial Center was turned into a stage set: the actors moved around from location to location, and the audience followed. Every ten minutes or so, we'd get up and relocate. Shakespearean quotes reverberated through the steel-concrete-glass spaciousness of the modern hallways, and the costumed actors were superb. If anything, it wasn't easy to keep pace with all the events-watching, listening, drawing, moving around...up the stairs, down the stairs, sitting down, getting up, moving out of the way...This was a very fresh and unusual take on Shakespeare. Besides, nobody had the slightest chance of falling asleep!

Ophelia, going mad, gave me chills...Ginny Myers Lee, the actrees, was so good.

Once again, I was reminded, to my astonishment, just how many phrases that we use today, have roots in Hamlet.

"I must be cruel only to be kind"
"Though this be madness yet there is method in it"
"Something is rotten in the state of Denmark"
"And each particular hair to stand on end"
"There is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so"

"When sorrows come, they come not single spies,
But in battalions."


"What a piece of work is a man! How noble in reason! how infinite in faculty! in form, in moving, how express and admirable! in action how like an angel! in apprehension how like a god! the beauty of the world! the paragon of animals! And yet, to me, what is this quintessence of dust? man delights not me; no, nor woman neither, though, by your smiling, you seem to say so."


  1. I love these Julia. It must have been a really interesting performance.

  2. Did you notice that they skipped "To be or not to be" soliloquy??

  3. Sasha, they didn't skip it - it was in the very beginning

    Yulya, amazing drawings. Especially the first one of Hamlet, beautiful.

  4. Hi Donna, thank you-it was. Great acting & costumes + unusual idea...

  5. Bella-thank you, that's so sweet :) It was really nice to see you there!

  6. April-i want to be an artist when i grow up.

  7. My wife and I saw you drawing throughout the show...you really captured the essence of the play and the characters. By the way, sashamalchik, the play started with the "To be or not to be" soliloquy...the director moved it the beginning.

  8. I played Horatio in the show. Thanks for coming! We're doing Richard III in Central Park about a month from now. All shows are free. GREAT DRAWINGS! I love it when art inspires art.

  9. O Horatio, I mean JP, thank you-that's so nice of you to say.
    I will be there, in the park, in a month! Thanks for the heads up!
    And yes-I couldn't resist to draw-my hands were itching. You were magnificent! Keep inspiring...

  10. Jeff, I really appreciate it, thank you! My regards to your wife. -Julia

  11. i was just looking at these again, i love them so much!!

  12. Yulya! these are wonderful! xoxo--despina

  13. Heeey Despina! Thank you :) We're going to go in late May/June to draw Richard III-come along! xoxo

  14. Audrey, so are my biggest fan and love you! thanks!