The Mouse Trap, a 6 minute film featuring an all-female cast, completed filming here on March 31. The footage will now be edited and the final film will be screened during GAN-ә-meed Theatre Project’s stage production of Hamlet, with the on-stage cast watching the film.
Director Christopher Webb, a member of the acting faculty at Boston Conservatory and director of the stage Hamlet, decided early on that the “play within a play” scene in Hamlet would be a film. “Having the players appear on screen allows us to gain a glimpse into the mind’s eye of Hamlet, and have this presentation of the murder of his father be seen completely from his point of view.”
Produced by GAN-ә-meed Theatre Project, the film was cast with four female Boston Conservatory acting students (in order of appearance), Emma Wagner (Chorus), Kelsey Hercs (Player King), Tess Brenner (Player Queen) and Whitney Conkling (Lucianus); filmed by Christopher McKenzie, film professor with the New England Institute of Art; and edited by Jamie Kennedy, a student in the film department of Emerson College. The script was adapted by Webb from a scene in Shakespeare’s Hamlet and will be presented as part of GAN-ә-meed’s all-female production of Hamlet in May.
Early in the planning, Webb turned to McKenzie for the filming. He knew “this would be a great way to pool resources, while giving some real-world experience to students from both the Boston Conservatory as well as NEIA.” The inclusion of students was also a natural connection for Gan-e-meed Theatre Project and its Producing Artistic Director, SerahRose Roth, as part of their mission to advance the role of women in theatre. “GAN-e-meed cannot possibly hope to close the gender gap without fostering the growth of young women in the theatre community. In this case, we were able to offer roles to four musical theatre students who have never before worked in front of a camera, giving them the opportunity to explore new territory that will help make them successful performers when they leave school. We also had the good fortune to work with our Hamlet costume designer, Elisabetta Polito who is a graduate student at Brandeis.”
Photographs from the film set can be viewed on the Hamlet backstage blog, findinghamlet.wordpress.com. Hamlet, GAN-ә-meed’s first full production, features an all-female cast and performs in May, first playing in Lowell at Gallery 119 and then moving to The Armory Center for the Arts in Somerville. Tickets are now on sale at www.ganemeed.org.
The Mouse Trap Cast (in order of appearance)
Player King…Kelsey Hercs
Player Queen…Tess Brenner
Director of Photography…Christopher McKenzie
Costume Designer…Lisa Polito
Screenplay…Christopher Webb, adapted from Shakespeare
Production Manager…Christopher Webb
Grips…Lisa Polito, Jamie Kennedy, SerahRose Roth