Weekend Showcase: “The Tempest” at North Hennepin Community College
Shakespeare’s last play is getting a run at North Hennepin Community College in Brooklyn Park. “The Tempest” at North Hennepin Community College is onstage through April 21.
First performed in 1611, “The Tempest” is Shakespeare’s final play, so some consider it Shakespeare’s goodbye to the theater.
“We did a lot of work on language at the beginning. We would have people do the language of the play and then have people kind of paraphrase it in their own words. So it was like having two rehearsal periods at once,” said director Kathy Hendrickson.
“The play is about a man named Prospero,” explained Hendrickson. At North Hennepin, a woman was cast in the role, so it’s Prospera. “Prospera lost her throne and was driven out of Milan by her brother, and he was in cahoots with the king of Naples at the time.”
Kaitlyn Barrett plays two characters, Alonzo, the King of Naples, and Stephano, the King’s drunken butler.
“My character Alonzo, along with the character of Antonio, overthrow Prospera and she gets shipwrecked onto an island, and then we happen to be passing by said island, and she’s got these magic powers, and she shipwrecked us onto the island to get her revenge,” said Barrett.
None of the actors had ever performed in a Shakespeare play and the dialogue can be a challenge.
“You know, once you get the language into your mouth, I think it’s just like any other play,” said Barrett.
If you’re not familiar with the story of “The Tempest,” a quick primer may not be a bad idea to familiarize yourself with the characters and sequence of events.
“The Tempest” is onstage at North Hennepin Community College in Brooklyn Park through the 21st. For show times and tickets go to North Hennepin Community College.