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11 February 2010 @ 08:21 am
Hamlet!! Review (+ Asahi photos)  
Should have written this a week ago, but I wanted to get at least some thoughts down on Hamlet!!

The best way to describe this show is, in a word, "entertainment". Well, that, and "a Ryuu Masaki promotion vehicle".

The reason I say that is all of us already know that Hamlet is a classic. And this is the story in a very basic form; a framework on which to build a stage full of heavy rock music and outrageous costumes.

Actually by and large I liked the costumes 8D It was cool, the method of dressing most people in the same black outfits and then having them wear other things on top to show when they're playing a more meaningful character... Or not so meaningful, in the case of the maids XD I really enjoyed the gothic atmosphere and the way the background dancing complemented the scenes and everything.

But anyway, the approach to the story. It's fine, to me -- one of many interpretations of Hamlet that, as I said, to a large degree is just meant to entertain and be a spectacle for the eyes and not to be the most deep and meaningful production out there.

That being said I was still moved by a lot of things. (Prepare to be very unsurprised.)

Ran-chan, Ran-chan, Ran-chan, Ran-chan. Whenever she danced I couldn't look away. The first time, the bit where Masaki is angsting and then Ran-chan appears and they dance together -- that was the first time I cried.

But the part I really cried at... During the play within a play that Hamlet arranges to shake up his uncle, Ophelia is watching quietly from her own place -- having been told earlier by her father to stay away from Hamlet.

Masaki comes over and is like "can I lay my head in your lap?" and Ran-chan says "no, Your Highness, you can't!" and Masaki does anyway. And so Ran-chan is helplessly trapped and just sits there staring intently down at her prince. So focused, so still, as if a thousand thoughts and emotions are going through her all at once.

That look... I can't describe it at all, but even trying to makes me tear up again. If only I could take that look and shut it up in a box and hold it in my heart forever.

Oh, Ran-chan ;;____________;; ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Her Ophelia going mad was different from her Jailor's Daughter going mad, which is commendable I think. Another actress might have done them basically the same. But the Jailor's Daughter was a desperate, forlorn and miserable kind of insane, whereas Ophelia was more overwhelmed but still trying to cling to some shred of happiness. If that makes any sense.

And then, AND THEN at the end revue when Masaki was off getting changed they brought everyone else out and Ran-chan was right in the center and oh god, oh god. She stood there like she was meant to be there. She danced and she shone and I couldn't see anyone else.

Admittedly Bow Hall is not the same as the Grand Theater. It's still going to be an uphill battle for this girl. Her singing is passable but not outstanding (ahem although that could be said of a lot of top stars :P)

But she can do it; I believe in her so strongly -- if I could just physically imbue her with all the faith I feel she would be glowing already.

...That took me forever to write.


The opening number was AMAZING, and then through part of the first act I was kind of skeptical. Up in my own head too much; Thinking (with a capital T) too much and not enjoying things.

But somewhere between Ran-chan Looking at her that way and her PERFECT half-crazed laugh at the Act I curtain, I was completely sold. (Again, I'm sure this surprises no one.) And then I was even more sold -- sold on the future of Tsukigumi -- when I saw the final duel.

I saw what Chauvelin could be; what Masaki could make of it. I saw the spark. (Plus there's no way I could have been expected to resist this.)

As much as I may have worried and complained about the company giving Masaki too much to do too fast... I guess I've come around to the thinking of the fans who know her better ;) Putting her dead center and giving her a lot to do is the best thing for her, because she feeds off of that energy. She was positively bursting with life and presence, just radiating the sense that she belonged in the spotlight as the center of attention.

That was in the opening number and finale (plus that weird concert bit) where she was supposed to be radiating energy. The angsting... I guess I wish I could see it again to more deeply analyze Ryuu Masaki's Stylized Shakespearean Angsting(TM). That stuff mostly reminded me of Kinsmen -- which isn't bad, but maybe I wasn't completely "sold" on it.

But her singing was great, and yes it did seem like 60 songs the way so much dialogue was melodic and they almost never used the same tune twice *________*

...GOD this is taking forever.

Uzuki Hayate:

Toshiiiii got to sing a LOT which was great, and was still treated better than Tamaki Ryou which I had worried about a little... Suffice it to say I liked what I saw ♥ I liked it so much that I relented on my selfish wishing that Shimon would get the Pimpernel shinko lead -- Toshi should get it, really; she's talented and could really make something out of a lead role like that. As it was her Horatio definitely impressed me, although apparently I fail at explaining why >.>;;;

Tamaki Ryou:

This one also impressed me. (Watch me as I sabotage my own standpoint on girls getting pushed young! :P) At the very least, her dancing immediately jumped out to me. And her acting didn't seem so far below the principals she was performing with. Her presence belied her age. Keep working hard, Tamaki!

Koshino Ryuu:

NSDFGHJKL SHE WAS BRILLIANT nothing else needs to be said :P

Itsumine Aki:

NSDFGHJKL SO SEXY so many things need to be said; I could go on for pages and pages about my Senka crush ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ Itsumine-san, feel free to ditch all the leather and boas and beehive hair and just stay in simple red gowns that show off your shoulders. It's positively enthralling.

(That costume with the fringe on the bosom, though, was a little TOO mesmerizing um could we please tone that down a bit? *_________*;;)

Touka Yurino:

NGH ALSO SEXY gah I should have known this was always going to happen, I've been on the path to being under the spell of this musumeyaku for ages but seriously DEAR YURINO, PLEASE STOP BEING SO DISTRACTINGLY HOT. It's like how Ichika was at her most amazing in Scout -- Yurino really needs to be given as many "snarky, badass chick in black" roles as possible. (Disclaimer: Rosencrantz did not give her nearly enough chances to be snarky, but at least she LOOKED badass in black and I stared at her legs all through the opening)

Sawaki Rizu:

Kept catching my eye and I was like "do I know that one?" and then I checked at intermission and was like "lol self, it's Rizu" XP I'm still not used to seeing her as an otokoyaku, okay. But she had some singing bits, which were good of course :)

Kaidou Nozomu, Maai Suzuka:

Also stole my attention away several times. Suzuka I remembered from her cute servant bit in Kinsmen, but with Nozomu it was just like "tall *_______* and dancing *________*"

Asami Jun:

Was watching this one too because TALL and a 95th! Gambatte, little (or not-so-little XP) one!!!

Hayami Sei:

Was Hamlet's Feelings Dancer in a couple of scenes, which resulted in me looking her up.

Miyume Himari, Kagetsu Miyako, Shirayuki Sachika:

Were just perfect little black-hearted female gravediggers ♥

I really have to stop but oh wait there's one more

Ken Ruisu:

Bwahahahahaha oh my god when she came out for the finale dance still in her ghost makeup XDDDDD But yeah she was good in the play too.

...And yeah. Definitely a show that I would see again -- and pay for a DVD for -- if I were made of money. ^^;;; I guess it will only show on Sky Stage, though...

Anyway. Now I need to go pick up a Jen! Am possibly seeing Yukigumi today, and it's the first day of rehearsals for Shangri-la.

Hold your breath--!
Current Mood: sleepysleepy
Proactively Untwist Octagonal Hippopotamus Pants: shakespeare - srs academicdramaturgca on February 10th, 2010 11:46 pm (UTC)
No DVD? ;_;;;;;; But I want it! For my thesis *coughlyingcough*
♥ƹ̵̡ӝ̵̨̄ʒ♥°``'まりい'``°♥ƹ̵̡ӝ̵̨̄ʒ♥: Hamlet redamami_yuki on February 10th, 2010 11:51 pm (UTC)
I soooooo wish there to be a DVD. I don't know what I'll do if there isn't. :(

Anyway I wish I could see this live.
And I also love Itsumine Aki. And Koshino Ryuu. And Masaki is definitely starting to grow on me now... ♥
(Deleted comment)
rachpenarachpena on February 11th, 2010 12:34 am (UTC)
NO DVD?? Oh I hope that isn't true. Wish I could see some form of this musical. Yea Masaki!! Sounds like she did a good job.
magenta07 on February 11th, 2010 12:40 am (UTC)
ahhh, this show sounds SO good!!!

thanks for the review! :D
cosmos14: brotherscosmos14 on February 11th, 2010 01:27 am (UTC)
too bad no DVD. i would like to see this. not into Shakespeare, but this one got me interested... because of rockish approach? hehehehehehe
ruderal_speciesruderal_species on February 11th, 2010 02:11 am (UTC)
I already wanted to see it, and now you've made it even worse. :(

Because, this:

a framework on which to build a stage full of heavy rock music and outrageous costumes

is basically my favorite kind of show. ;)
happy_riceball on February 11th, 2010 03:04 am (UTC)
Happy to hear Hamlet!! was entertaining! I hope they release a DVD. I'd love to see it too. Thank you for letting us know how it was~! ^^

If you see Yukigumi, please tell how that is too? *wishes to be in Japan* Yumiko. ;__;
dybji on February 11th, 2010 03:43 am (UTC)
And so Ran-chan is helplessly trapped and just sits there staring intently down at her prince. So focused, so still, as if a thousand thoughts and emotions are going through her all at once.

I've always thought the most "sexy" moment in "Hamlet" was when he comes out, shirt undone and hair an Einstein-style mess, and just corners Ophelia, grabs her arm, presses her against the wall ... and then just stares at her. For how long she can't tell, but he just stares deep into her eyes, looking as if he's thinking a thousand things at once. I am confident that the flip-flops he thereby induces in Ophelia's and the audience's stomachs are by sincere, total, and oblivious accident, knowing Hamlet, who is actually just probably so lost in thought that he doesn't realize what he's doing, but still: It is the most conventionally sexy moment in the play, and it's always the first to get cut, I do not get this, directors of the world.

But it's cool that they put that same sort of dynamic, in an opposite way, into the head-lap scene. <3 Fujii-sense really did do a lot for active musumeyaku inclusion with this one, it seems. :D

Koshino Ryuu ... WAS BRILLIANT


Actually by and large I liked the costumes


and they almost never used the same tune twice

<3 <3 <3

She stood there like she was meant to be there. She danced and she shone and I couldn't see anyone else.

( <3 <3 <3 ) ^ <3

Oh I'm so happy for her. <3 Go, go, Ran-chan!