Carmel Theatre Company presents
By William Shakespeare
Adaptation by Doug Powers
Presented in two acts:
Act 1 is 110 minutes
Act 2 is 70 minutes.
There is a 15 minute intermission.
Meet the Cast
Brian G. Hartz - Hamlet Brian has been acting since the age of eight. His credits as an actor, director, and sound designer include productions for Bloomington Playwrights Project, Theatre on the Square, the Phoenix Theatre, Carmel Community Players, Catalyst Repertory Theatre, Q Artistry, and HART (now Indianapolis Shakespeare Company), among many others. Hamlet marks Brian's second BardFest appearance, having played the title role in Timon of Athens for Catalyst in the very first BardFest. (He is, to the best of anyone's knowledge, the only actor who has ever played Timon in Indianapolis.) Other favorite roles include Dr. Dysart in Equus (Catalyst), Stephano in The Tempest (EclecticPond), and The Abbe de Coulmier in Quills (Alley Theater). When he is not hanging around theatres, Brian is Chief Information Officer of Forefront Solutions, Inc. and TORQworks.
Brian would like to thank Doug for the opportunity he thought he'd lost to play his favorite character, every single member of this outstanding cast for their hard work and outrageous talent, Monica for her unwavering support and love, his family for all their help, and Beatrice for being patient while Daddy's away at rehearsals. I know it's not The Lion King, Bebe, but it's close.
Miranda Nehring- Ophelia Miranda cannot believe she was able to trick Doug into letting her play with this incredible cast. Miranda received her Juris Doctorate from IU McKinney and will be taking the February Bar Exam, so please pray for her now and at the hour of her death (both on and off stage). Thank you to Brian for being the best Hamlet an Ophelia could hope for, Doug for trusting my choices, my family for endless support, and Andy for getting me to and from essentially every rehearsal. “Failing to fetch me at first keep encouraged, missing me one place search another, I stop somewhere waiting for you.”— ‘Song of Myself’, Walt Whitman
Jo Bennett- Horatio Jo is a professional actor, storyteller, & voice-actor from Indianapolis, IN. They graduated with honors in ’08 from Butler University with a degree in Theater. They are a company member with the Indianapolis Shakespeare Company and an alumni actor from The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. Jo was most recently seen with Indyshakes' Traveling Troupe as Charles/Phebe in As You Like It and Leonata/Boracchio in Much Ado About Nothing. Jo dedicates this performance to their husband James Bennett & their two wonderful brothers Noah & Jonah Winston. “Cherish forever what makes you unique, ‘cuz you’re really a yawn if it goes.” - Bette Midler
Eric Bryant - King Claudius Eric is excited to be making his first BardFest appearance, and his second go at the Bard as an actor (he played Murderer #2 in a production of CTS many, many years ago with the wonderful Alfred “Doc” Edyvean). Eric was last seen onstage as the Ghost of John Barrymore in CCP’s I HATE HAMLET (notice a pattern?). His fight choreography has been seen on many of the stages in Indianapolis. Prior to returning to Indiana in 2004, Eric lived in New York and toured the country in different productions of THE THREE MUSKETEERS (Athos, Aramis, Duke of Buckingham). He studied at HB Studio with Sandy Dennis, Carol Rosenfeld, and Joe Daly, his long-time friend, mentor, and fencing instructor, and at Circle Rep Lab with Michael Warren Powell, Peg Denithorn, and Lanford Wilson. Prior to moving to New York, Eric was a student of J. Edgar and Dorothy Webb at IUPUI. Favorite roles include Barrymore in I HATE HAMLET, Eddie in FOOL FOR LOVE, Ken in FIFTH OF JULY, Billy in STREAMERS, Hoss in TOOTH OF CRIME, and Judas in COLD JOURNEY IN THE DARK.
Jean Arnold - Queen Gertrude Jean is an actor, playwright, yogini, wife of Richard and mother of four great kids. She is grateful to be a part of Bard Fest in this challenging play! She has appeared in plays and musicals throughout Indianapolis area, Ohio, New Hampshire and NYC. Favorite shows include; Big River, Fairfield, Hamlet, Company, Lost in Yonkers, Social Security, The Taming of the Shrew, Moon Over Buffalo, The Mystery of Edwin Drood, Company, A Chorus Line, The Rwandans’ Visit, La Casa Azul (orig. cast), Cinders, Welcome Home (ArtReach of Cincinnati), A Comedy of Errors, Cinders, Fox on the Fairway, The Game’s Afoot, God Bless you, Mr. Rosewater and once upon a time she danced Val in A Chorus Line. A few of her original short plays were produced in Four Square, Indy Fringe 14, and A Very Phoenix Xmas’s 11 & 13. She longs always to be out of captivity whether in the ocean, her Missouri farm forest, saluting the sun on the beach or biking, kayaking and marveling at Giant Redwoods.
Alan Cloe - Polonius/Second Sailor Alan is making his Bard Fest debut! Alan Cloe has appeared sporadically in community theater over the last 50 years. Thanks to our director, Doug Powers, and my wife, Susan, for their support.
Noah Winston- Laertes Noah is excited to make his Bard Fest debut in Hamlet as Laertes. A Butler Theatre graduate, Noah has performed in many theatres in Indianapolis such as Footlite Musicals, Theatre on the Square, Indiana Repertory Threatre, and Beef and Boards Dinner Theatre. He has also worked with local theatres and companies such as Eclectic Pond, Q Artisty, and The Ronen Chamber Ensemble. His local television credits include hosting The INtheLoop TV show, and the Indy Visitor's Channel. Noah currently is a resident actor in the Lilly Theatre at the Children's Museum of Indianapolis where he performed many plays and musicals such as Tales from the Jungle Book, The Snow Queen, James and The Giant Peach, and most recently, Nightfall with Edgar Allen Poe. Noah would like to thank his friends and family for their amazing support. He also dedicates his performances to his late mother Pamela Gray who died earlier this year and would have loved to see her children once again in another Shakespeare play together. He would like to give a special thanks to his partner Erika Wilson, who without her help, he would have not have been able to take the time to be able to be a part of this amazing production.
Benjamin Mathis - Rosencrantz/Barnardo Benjamin is excited to return to Bard Fest. Benjamin has previously appeared in a number of Shakespeare productions, including a different Hamlet (Horatio,) Twelfth Night (Duke Orsino,) and Antony and Cleopatra (Mark Antony.) By day, he is a training manager, and by night, a video game designer. He would like to thank his wife and daughter for supporting his acting habit.
Gorgi Parks Fulper - Guildenstern/Marcellus Gorgi is making her debut with Bard Fest. Gorgi received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Franklin College and recently participated in the Month-Long Intensive with Shakespeare & Company in Lenox, Massachusetts. Other credits include Actor in Nightfall with Edgar Allen Poe (Lilly Theatre), Rosalind in As You Like It (Garfield Shakespeare Company) and Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Noblesville Shakespeare in the Park). She will be appearing as Hannah in PUFFS at The District Theatre (December 2019-January 2020). Gorgi would like to thank her friends and family for their support.
Tony Armstrong - Ghost/First Player/Captain/
The last time Tony trod the Bardfest boards,
He played Baptista, Kate’s dismissive dad,
In Taming of the Shrew (there were no swords
In that one); critics thought it wasn’t bad.
The last time that he stepped on stage with Hartz (Who’s Hamlet now), and saw Director Powers,
They horsed around in Equus, playing parts
Of stable man and shrink and dad for hours.
The last time Tony read the brooding Dane,
Was in an AP Lit class that he taught;
“O horrible!” is even more insane
When acting it than reading it, he’s thought.
He’d like to thank the whip-smart cast and crew;
And now, the Ghost’s own words: “Adieu, adieu.”
Kyrsten Lyster- Francisco/Player Lucianus/
Second Clown. Kyrsten is a graduate of the University of Indianapolis Department of Theatre. Recent performance credits include Game of Crows, The Pope Walks into a Bar, Father Ned!, and Showerhead (IndyFringe Theatre Festival); aMUSEd and Who’s Minding the Snapper? (Diva Fest, 2019); Almost, Maine (Mud Creek Players); Yellow Heat, The Duchess of Malfi, and Much Ado About Nothing (Khaos Company Theatre); The Seagull (Catalyst Repertory); Lend Me a Tenor (Scottish Rite Cathedral); Nana’s Naughty Knickers, Death by Design, and Squabbles (Epilogue Players); Next Year’s Man of Steel (StageWorthy Productions); Lightning and Jellyfish (Theatre on the Square); and The Tragedy of King Lear, Animals Out of Paper, Arms and the Man, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, The Good Person of Szechwan, Five Women Wearing the Same Dress, and The Comedy of Errors at the University of Indianapolis.
Rachel Synder- Osric/PlayerQueen/Reynaldo Rachel is living the literary nerd dream: teach high school English in the mornings, take part in Hamlet in the evenings. This is Rachel’s second Indy Bard Fest production following her Indianapolis stage debut in The Merchant of Venice last fall. Favorite credits also include Mother in A Christmas Story, The Countess in Picasso at the Lapin Agile, various cheerful murderers, and historical interpreter appearances in special themed events through the Indiana Historical Society and Indiana Humanities. Rachel has a B.A. in English from The University of Akron, and she is currently teaching junior/senior English classes at Southside Christian School in addition to her actor/facilitator position at the Indiana Historical Society. Rachel volunteers her time providing literacy interventions and other tasks at schools and helping with veterans’ events around the city as part of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Rachel is grateful to her husband for his enthusiastic support of her theatre pursuits, as well as to her two kiddos, Reid and Lane, for always helping her run her lines (and being firm—yet kind—when she misses one).
Janice Florczak Hibbard - Voltemand/Prince Fortinbras/First Sailor Janice was last seen at Bard Fest as a witch in Macbeth. Past onstage credits include performances with Savage At Last, Buck Creek Players, Q Artistry, Theater on The Square, Eclectic Pond, IndyFringe. Janice is also a playwright, having works published, and produced locally at Indy Fringe Festival and by Fat Turtle Theater Company. December 6-15, Janice will be performing in It’s A Wonderful Life The Radio Show, playing in The Switch Theater at Ji-Eun Lee Music Academy.
Patty Blanchfield - Danish Sentry/Priest Patty is an Indianapolis author, artist and actor with a passion for the classics, film and supporting local artists. Her first book of poetry and flash fiction, V.i.t.r.ii.o.l., can be found on Amazon with the second, Permafrost, to be published on Halloween and she's definitely not panicking, you're panicking.
Primarily performing on film, stage and radio in Bloomington, she's been delighted to act for Catalyst Repertory Theater in Feral Boy, various music videos as well as the horror/parapsychology podcast "Bump" through Eat New Media since her arrival in Indy. Hamlet was the first play she'd ever read by the bard as a child - and honestly, if you don't like Shakespeare, you're wrong - so she was very excited to be asked to be a part of her first Bardfest this season.
... b-both times.
Bradford Reilly - Horatio (understudy) Bradford is a veteran Bard Fest actor, having appeared in As You Like It in the very first Bard Fest. He is a graduate of Ball State University, and he has worked for several local theatres including EclecticPond. He is currently pursuing his MBA at IU. Being an uncle is one of his favorite activities.
Alex Vasquez - Player Queen (understudy) Alex is a lifelong dancer and an instructor at Amp Dance Family. She's delighted to join the troupe of Players for one performance of the dance she choreographed for them. She'd like to thank Andy.
Doug Powers - Reynaldo/Osric (understudy) Doug is a man. Take him for all in all (keep scrolling to learn more about Doug).
Meet the Production Staff
Doug Powers - Director/Script Adapter/
Set Designer/Properties Master
This is Doug’s second consecutive year directing at Bard Fest, as he also helmed last year’s acclaimed production of The Merchant of Venice. He is honored and humbled that the festival producers tapped him to bring “The Big One” in the Shakespeare canon to Bard Fest’s fifth year. Doug has also acted in prior Bard Fests, appearing in As You Like It as Duke Senior and King Lear as Kent. His other Shakespeare credits include Richard III (Earl Rivers), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Peter Quince), Hamlet (Claudius), and Romeo and Juliet: A Crime Story (Father Laurence) which was directed by Brian G. Hartz and is how Brian and Doug met. Doug has tread the boards at a number of other theatres around town, including Phoenix Theatre, No Exit, EclecticPond, Fat Turtle, Catalyst Repertory, First Folio, and TOTS. He gives his deep gratitude to Jodi and Kat (and Freya, Chloe, and Monkey), Bill, Glenn, John, Tony, and most certainly Brian and this entire marvelous cast.
Sarah Jane Stiles- Stage Manager Sarah Jane Stiles (Stage Manager, Hamlet) is delighted to be a part of Bardfest again! Indy native, LUC grad, cat mom. Credits Include: Indy: ETC: J. Eyre (SM, 2017 + 2018), Drankspeare (SM, 2018 + 2019); CR: The Seagull (SM), Tooth of Crime (SM), Coriolanus (SM), Tortillo!2 (SM), Equus (SM); Much Ado About Nothing (Bardfest, SM); The Epic Christmas Battle of History (SM, KCT). Chicago: All Our Tragic (Wardrobe Head, The Hypocrites, Jeff Awards for Best Equity Midsize Production – Play, Best Costumes – Midsize Production), Them (SM, Pursuit Productions), This Is My Body (SM, LUC), Give Love (SM, Soul Journey Productions). Thank you to this fantastic cast and crew (especially Doug)!
Eric Matters - Lighting Designer Eric is glad to be working on another Shakespeare production. He would like to thank Doug for giving him the opportunity, and his family for being along for the ride.
Marina Turner - Costume Designer Marina is a wizard of all things textile. When they're not costuming massive theatrical productions, they're competing in knitting competitions, making complete wardrobes for their family and customers, and running a yarn shop.
Kristin Moutrey - Properties Artist Kristin is thrilled to be part of Bard Fest and take her first dive into theater. She graduated from AI Indianapolis for fashion design. Since then, she has worked in mascot construction, cosplay, and is currently a pattern and sample maker for a local bag company. She would like to give special thanks to the cast and crew for letting her be part of their show and using it as a new learning experience.
Director Sam Gold said that directing Hamlet is like directing in quicksand because every time one makes a choice about it, one can always say “But couldn’t the opposite also be true?” and the answer would pretty much always be yes. At some point in the process one has to make one's choices and trust them, but one can never truly dig to the bottom of this quicksand. There are always more possibilities, and that's why this play is still produced and is still so much a part of the English-speaking (and beyond) cultural consciousness.
In this play’s long history, there have been many fashions in cutting and interpreting it. In early post-Shakespeare productions, it was a simple revenge tragedy. It has been a political drama. It has been the saga of a romantically tortured, melancholy soul. For the last several years, the fashion has been to treat it as a family drama. Hamlet is all of these things, and it is none of them. It will support any of these fashions, yet each of them leaves major elements on the page, unproduced.
Our approach has been not to cut the text, but to trim it. We want to present as much of its massive scope, its crucial pacing variations, and its delicious language as we can while also avoiding the four-hour marathon of the full blended texts of the Second Quarto and the First Folio. All of the scenes and all but one of the named characters are here. Hamlet’s soliloquies are intact. Fortinbras isn’t just someone who shows up at the end for no apparent reason.
Our interpretive starting point is “When the people of the state are in chaos, the state is in chaos.” Once our foot was in the door with this principle, we could explore the revenge tragedy, the family drama, and all the other stories wrapped up in this play. Paramount to everything we’re doing, though, is the emotional truth of the relationships and the situations within each scene--and these characters go through some enormously intense situations. The worst trap one can fall into with such a familiar work is just to mark time from one plot point to the next as a series of foregone conclusions. We have scrupulously worked to avoid that trap.
With every Shakespeare project, I strive to stay true to the text while being unafraid to uncover bold possibilities within the text. With a little such digging, I believe we’ve found strong, rich characters in the underwritten and sometimes painfully unexplored Ophelia and Gertrude. We’ve found a Horatio who isn’t a mere sycophant but who shares our frustration with Hamlet’s more questionable antics. We have definitely found a Hamlet who is so much more than “a man who can’t make up his mind.”
A director of Hamlet is ultimately only as good as their Hamlet. And a Hamlet is ultimately only as good as the rest of their cast. I am in excellent hands with Brian, and Brian is in excellent hands with this cast. Sit back and watch these dedicated, talented, wonderful artists work to bring you the most iconic work in the English-language theatre in a way that’s fresh and alive and not quite like any other Hamlet the play or Hamlet the character you may have seen before.
Tristan Ross - Sound Designer &
'Bard Fest Ambassador of Good Will' Tristan is pleased as punch for the chance to return again to Bard Fest. His previous Bard Fest Credits include As You Like It, King Lear, Timon of Athens, and Romeo & Juliet.
Eric Bryant - Fight Choreographer Eric Bryant was introduced to Stage Combat as a freshman at IUPUI, which is also where he had his first experience with stage fencing in a production of THE THREE MUSKETEERS. He studied extensively under Joe Daly at HB Studio, becoming Mr. Daly's assistant. Eric taught classes for Mr. Daly at HB Studio and The Neighborhood Playhouse when Mr. Daly was appearing in MASTERGATE. Eric choreographed productions of HAMLET and MACBETH for the Staten Island Shakespeare Company, and provided choreography for several other productions. Eric has toured the country twice in bi-lingual productions of THE THREE MUSKETEERS under the direction of Tito Enriquez, and performed along with Mr. Daly in an evening of fencing scenes for the HB Playwrights Foundation called ACTOR AND SWORD. In New York, Eric also taught classes at the Michael Howard Studio, the Red Barn Theater, and Times Square Studio. He has After returning to Indianapolis, Eric conducted classes for actors interested in learning how to use the sword, which is where he met Brian Hartz. He has provided classes and choreography for many theaters in the Indianapolis area, including Civic Theater
The cast and crew of Hamlet wish to gratefully acknowledge the invaluable assistance of:
Leaf Software Solutions (rehearsal space)
Footlite Musicals (set pieces, costumes, and props)
North Central High School (set pieces)
Alex Vasquez - Dance Choreographer Alex is a lifelong dancer and an instructor at Amp Dance Family. As with any artist, she says "All you need to know about me, you can learn from my dancing." She's excited to have the chance to make the Players' "dumb show" stand out from most productions and to lend some whimsy to this tragedy. She gives her thanks to Andy.
For Bard Fest
Kevin Robertson - Executive Fight Director Kevin C. Robertson, is proud to join the company of Bardfest as Executive Stage Combat Director. Kevin brings over 40 rears of theater experience as an actor, director and stage4 combat choreographer. Kevin is professionally recognized in 8 of the 9 weapons styles tough by the Society of American Fight Directors. An award winning choreographer from the Washington,DC metroplex Kevin has choreographed well over 100 shows ranging from Romeo and Juliet to Moon Over Buffalo to The Miracle Worker..
Tony Johnson- Associate Producer From the first time Thespis jumped on a cart and started reciting poetry someone was needed to support those making art. Thus the role of the producer was born. Mr. Johnson has enjoyed the role of supporting the wonderful artists you are enjoying tonight. The passion of the directors to tell these stories has been inspiring to him. It is sincere hope that every audience member finds a moment in these shows that becomes a part of their story, and that the power of art to comfort us, confront us, and change us is on full display. He is thankful to his fellow producers for their wisdom and patience in leading this festival. He further is grateful to his wife and daughter for their forbearance during this year long obsession Bardfest has become. Lastly, he would like to thank the dedicated actors, directors, stage managers, costumers, lighting/sound designers, technical directors, and crew for their professionalism and dedication that makes Bardfest such an important event in the Indianapolis artistic calendar.
John Clair - Associate Producer John has long been a devotee of Shakespeare, and was most recently seen on stage playing Leonato in the Bard Fest production of Much Ado about Nothing, directed by Glenn Dobbs several years ago. He has been involved in theatre since he was a youth, launching his theatrical career at the Jordan Conservatory in Indianapolis, IN, working both on stage as an actor, and backstage in the technical aspects. He has sat on the boards of several Indianapolis Theatres including the Repertory Theatre at CTS, and Carmel Community Players. He and his wife June have written and produced a number of scripts including Andersen: A Fairy Tale Life, Pocahontas: An American Princess, and a musical revue it’s about Time. He has served as producer, stage director, and technical director of numerous productions at Carmel Theatre Company. Clair is currently chairman of Carmel Theatre Company, and in that capacity has hosted BardFest for several years.
Nan Macy - Associate Producer Nan Macy lives in Columbus, IN with her wonderful family. She has worked in regional theatre for many years both as an actress and an administrator. Nan has played Shakespearean roles such as Lady Macbeth in “Macbeth”, Claudius in “Hamlet”, and Volumnia in “Coriolanus”. Other favorite roles include: a suspicious and hard-nosed nun in “Doubt”, an aging movie star in “Vanya and Sonja and Masha and Spike”, a daffy divorcee in “The Women”, a bitter Grandmother in “Lost in Yonkers” and Super Diva, Maria Callas in “Master Class”. Nan loves dancing of every kind and is a dedicated ballroom dancer. She attends regional and national dance competitions where she gets to wear beautiful dresses loaded with rhinestones. Nan is very excited to become a part of the Bard Fest Production Team. It is a great honor to work with such dedicated and passionate artists.
Glenn L. Dobbs - Executive Producer Glenn serves as Executive Producer and the Artistic Director of Bard Fest. Glenn founded Bard Fest several years ago. His previous theatrical credits include Henry V, Hamlet, Richard III, Much Ado About Nothing, Romeo and Juliet, As You Like it, Twelfth Night, Macbeth, Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, The Elephant Man, The Shadow Box, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Into the Woods, Proof, The Sound of Music, Medea, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare - Abridged, and many others. He wants to thank Andy, Mel, Susan, Linda, Jennifer, Fred, Paul, and many others who have been with him from the beginning. And especially his long suffering "Trophy Wife" Colleen who has endured this 'hobby' of his for so long.