The tempest a Shakespeare’s Globe theatre production in 2013 directed by Jeremy Herrin who is a renowned and well respected director, he first made his Shakespeare debut in 2011 by directing Eve Best in “Much Ado About Nothing”. The tempests is set on an un-named Mediterranean island in renaissance Europe.His ship in the play is wrecked near a Mediterranean island. Shakespeare makes it a magical island that is controlled by Prospero – previously a European duke – who brings those who have wronged him to the island. The story unfolds from that point.
A ship that is carrying Alonso King of Naples, his son Ferdinand, Antonio, and other important nobles(but not important to the story or storyline) is wrecked in a storm created by the spirit Ariel, under the magic and orders of Prospero. He explains to his daughter Miranda that he was and still is the rightful Duke of Milan, seized by Antonio, and that they had arrived on their island many years before after being sent out to sea by some of those whom he now has in his power.
Prospero who i mentioned earlier was a European duke that was cast out with his infant daughter Miranda. He gives off the vibes of a school teacher in the way he tells the story through dance, songs and movements which easily draws the audience in. Whereas his daughter Miranda is often thought as a bland character that doesn’t have much development throughout the story or personality, that is likely a consequence of being stuck on an island inhabited only by her father and another male Caliban. Caliban who is half human, half monster, is forced into servitude as Prospero and Miranda now inhabit the island, Prospero explains why he treats him harshly by claiming that after initially befriending him , Caliban attempted to rape his daughter Miranda.
Ariel was a rather interesting and impressive portrayal, he had a strong contingent of admiring fans in the audience, but in fairness to them it was hard to keep your eyes off him, the way he swung, leapt and climbed over the set as well as when he spoke, one moment words pouring out, the next silence as he paused to bring up more sounds, giving us the indication that this was not his primary or first language, but an attempt at being human and speaking their/our language. He is controlled by Prospero and is bound to serve him because he rescued him from the tree in which he was imprisoned. These were some of the main characters that were consistently involved in the plot throughout the story. The way I which the actors interact with the audience by walking through them to the stage or from the stage as well as the way they add humour to the roles while engaging the audience, sometimes it seems like they are talking to them or asking them questions.
Jeremy Herrin’s interesting production creates magic through simple means, such as a the music emanating from every corner of the building. Herrin sometimes slows the pace to maximise or extend the laughs from the audience, but he gets good performances from Colin Morgan as a nimble Ariel and James Garnon as a Caliban who burps and spits in the groundlings’ faces ( the groundling’s being the audience).
The targeted audience would definitely be teenagers and up as the concepts and language may be hard to understand sometimes and as we grow and learn we develop opinions and different emotions and we have experienced different life experiences, we can each empathise or relate or hate a character in Shakespeare’s the tempest. I personally found this play, a little boring for the most part there was some interesting parts but most of the story didn’t engage me or catch my attention as some of Shakespeare’s other works have.