Hamlet Prince of Skidmark By The Listies

Get ready for a blast of Shakespeare for kids. Plus zombies!

After winning over everyone who came to see it in 2016 at Sydney Theatre Company, this very cheeky, very clever, utterly irreverent riff on Hamlet, made especially for children – is back for a return season at the Seymour Centre these school holidays. The Listies, maestros of children’s entertainment, have pulled apart Shakespeare’s classic and glued it back together with hilarious costumes, loads of silliness and plenty of interactivity.

 

WHO ARE THE LISTIES?

The Listies are Richard Higgins and Matt Kelly. This irreverent duo have been making theatre and clowning around together for years since meeting at university. After doing comedy for adults and some ‘serious’ theatre as well, they made their first show for kids in 2009. The show, More fun than a wii, went on to be the first kids show ever to be nominated for the prestigious Melbourne International Comedy Festival best show award (the Barry). Since then, they’ve been making kids and their adults laugh all over the world.

Q&A WITH THE LISTIES

How does it feel to have a return season of Hamlet: Prince of Skidmark?

We’re so excited! It’s a great opportunity for us to revisit an important work like Hamlet and put in more vomiting, fart jokes and body rolls. Which, to be frank it needed. Also, we are performing at the Everest, which is exciting, it’s certainly the highest point above sea level that we have ever visited, let alone performed a show #bringthermals.

Has Shakespeare’s relevance changed since 2016?

Yes heaps, he’s on the way up at the moment. In 2016, no one knew who he was. He was super niche and indie, like only hipsters “got” him. But then he went on The Bachelor, did Celebrity Big Brother (UK) and now he is massive on Insta. We’ve heard something about a Netflix special, Love Island and a kombucha endorsement but his agent is being super cagey.

Why Hamlet?

It’s a good question, in fact we ask him that all the time: “Why Hamlet, why? Why don’t you just believe the ghost and get revenge straight away? Or, if you don’t believe the ghost, why don’t you just call ghostbusters? If you think he offed your dad why don’t you just call the cops on your uncle and get all CSI Elsinore on him? Why are you so mean to Ophelia? Why do you go around stabbing curtains? Why do you chat to yourself all the time? Why don’t we see the pirates bit?”

Why Skidmark?

Unlike the previous “Why Hamlet?” question, this one has never occurred to us. But thinking about it, we figured that not everyone is a Danish Prince who has been visited by a ghost who tells him that his uncle killed his father and married his mum, and so decides to feign madness, be mean to his girlf and question existence before causing the deaths of everyone he knows… but everyone probably has had a skidmark. So, we thought it was a good idea to put in something that everyone could relate too.


Article sponsored by Sydney Theatre Company.

Hamlet is already full of things kids love in a good story: ghosts, castles, sword fights, bodily fluids and spooky stuff. Add to the mix some supersonic gags and expertly timed stage magic and Hamlet Prince of Skidmark becomes a brilliantly disguised Shakespearean tragedy for everyone aged five and over. 4 – 22 July at the Seymour Centre. Tickets available from Sydney Theatre Company.

Guest Contributer
Guest Contributor
guest@childmags.com.au