W.S. “Klings” to Popularity

Just when you thought Hamlet had ceased to be reinvented, the Washington Shakespeare Company has once again, in the words of a press release, “turned Shakespeare on its ear”. The clip below gives you a taste of what you might see if you visit the D.C. metro area theatre company this Saturday, Sept. 25:

That’s right: this weekend, WSC will feature “By Any Other Name: An Evening of Shakespeare in Klingon.”

Coincidence? Not exactly.

Marc Okrand, the current president of the board at WSC, is the linguist responsible for the creation of Klingon, the language of a fictional race of warriors in the Star Trek series.

As Okrand said, “Given WSC’s creative approach to Shakespeare, performing scenes in Klingon struck me as something obvious to try. The upcoming celebration of WSC’s 21st season presents a great opportunity to pull these elements together in typical WSC fashion – and to offer an evening that’s both serious and fun.”

Serious and fun does seem like an apt description, and one well-suited for the repertoire at WSC. The Arlington, Va. theatre company is known for its innovative and provocative presentations of classic theater, including an all-female Taming of the Shrew and a nude Macbeth.

What can I say?

I’m still waiting to see A Midsummer Night’s Dream in elvish.

Nonetheless, kudos to WSC for tapping into the possibilities of language and exploring the way literary texts of all forms, including science fiction TV shows, can speak to one another and to a broader audience.

For more information, visit http://www.washingtonshakespeare.org/

(Thanks to Rachel for bringing this event to my attention.)

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