HAMLET—A YOUNG MAN’S VOICE. The other night I walked down the hill to see Shakespeare on the Sound’s production of Hamlet. It was the third Shakespeare play directed by Claire Kelly that I’ve seen, and it was very good, as I had expected. She wanted to cast a young actor, about age 20, as Hamlet, and she found Joey Santia, who was a very good Hamlet. What surprised me was what a difference his youth made. Santia has a good voice, and his line readings were good. His voice has a young man’s timbre and that changed Hamlet for me, perhaps permanently. The director of the Benedict Cumberbatch Hamlet tried to have a young Hamlet (or so I take beginning the play with Nat King Cole’s rendition of Nature Boy and with Horatio having a backpack), but Cumberbatch has a powerful mature voice and does not play young. Santia’s Hamlet was young and faced with the puzzling evils of the grown up world. That young voice will be one of the voices I hear when I read or see the play.

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