‘Hamlet’ returns to Union County

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UNION COUNTY, NJ — Hudson Shakespeare Co. returns for its 30th season of traveling Shakespeare with a medieval take on “Hamlet, Prince of Denmark.”

The show stars Zach Hendrickson as the prince directed by the ghost of his father to avenge his murder at the hands of Hamlet’s uncle, Claudius, played by Jon Ciccarelli, but at what cost? Who can Hamlet trust, and what should he do? Can the supernatural vision be trusted in a court where conspiracy and intrigue operate around each corner?

Hamlet’s lifelong friend Laertes, played by Alyssa Gray, now becomes an enemy. A budding romance with Ophelia, played by Emily Glaser, the daughter of the king’s right-hand man, Polonius, played by John C. Short, is upended. A once-close relationship with his mother, Gertrude, played by Noelle Fair, is strained after her marriage to his father’s murderer. Shakespeare shapes a classic tale of revenge into a tragically thoughtful meditation on duty to family and self.

HSC’s staging features six actors playing multiple roles in a briskly paced sword-and-pageantry presentation that is just under two hours long. At Kenilworth Public Library, 548 Boulevard, on Thursday, June 16, at 7 p.m., and on the Springfield Town Green in front of City Hall, 100 Mountain Ave., Springfield, on Tuesday, June 21, at 7 p.m. If it rains, the Springfield performance will be at the Springfield Public Library, 66 Mountain Ave., Springfield.

Photos Courtesy of J. Ciccarelli