On Friday, Nov. 8, the CalArts Center for New Performance (CNP) partners with contemporary art gallery Hauser & Wirth to present a special one-night-only presentation of HA-M-LET, created and performed by Brazilian American performer Peter Mark (Theater MFA 17).
HA-M-LET is a multilingual, multimedia performance installation that repurposes Shakespeare’s iconic revenge tale for the Information Age. Housed within a projection cube, the velocity of the titular character’s thoughts coincides with the rapid flashing of various images. The juxtaposition of Shakespeare’s original text with contemporary visuals, including GIFs, memes and 2D and 3D animation, is amplified by music, costumes and choreography. HA-M-LET is performed in Portuguese and English.
“Shakespeare’s text can meet whatever you throw at it – and that includes GIFs, memes, and the most contemporary images,” Mark noted in the official release. “Just as Hamlet didn’t know how to cope with what was required of him by the ghost – the image – of his father, I wanted to explore that same connection between body and image; how the past, present, and future can all be layered; and how images can beckon us to act beyond ourselves.”
HA-M-LET was first performed publicly in Warsaw last year, as part of the CNP residency with STUDIO Teatrgaleria, one of Poland’s premiere experimental theaters. The project has been in development since 2017, alongside a similar, yet-to-be-debuted remix of Romeo and Juliet. HA-M-LET was developed in association with LA-based performance center Automata Arts.
HA-M-LET will be performed twice, beginning in Hauser & Wirth’s courtyard.