Archive 2018/19    Archive 2018/19    Archive 2018/19    Archive 2018/19    Archive 2018/19    Archive 2018/19   


by William Shakespeare

Claudius has murdered his brother, the king, in his sleep, in order to ascend the throne and marry the queen. However, the ghost of the murdered warrior appears to his son and rightful heir, reveals the crime and urges him to seek revenge. Young Hamlet is in despair at the idea of setting this world, which is out of joint, to rights. He has “taken a profound look into the essence of things,” and it sickens him to be forced to act. Ultimately, he stages a play in which a king is murdered and the murderer marries the queen. Although King Claudius’s reaction exposes his guilt, Hamlet’s artistic evidence fails to bring justice: the terrible truth initiates an ineluctable cycle of death. This is the sixth time that Barbara Frey has explored Shakespeare’s oeuvre. Previous productions include her radical interpretation of “The Tempest” and, at the beginning of her career as a director, the musical piece “I Want To Talk Like Lovers Do,” which was based on Shakespeare’s sonnets. Her most recent Shakespeare production was of “Richard III.”


“Barbara Frey indeed launched her last season as Director of the Schauspielhaus Zürich on Thursday with a spectacular – understatement. A mellow evening of Shakespeare, appropriately shortened to two-and-a-half hours. [...] At the same time, this resolutely quiet, ritardando  production is also a vociferous, prickly manifesto: an affirmation of the aesthetic that Frey has now cultivated in her work at the Schauspielhaus for the best part of a decade.” Tages-Anzeiger

“It’s half fun, half audaciously serious. But then – the perfect joy of a theatrical moment – the mind embraces man, and son and father dance together through the wafting mists of melancholy. That moment is so beautiful that it makes one want to cross oneself. It isn’t the only magical, jaw-dropping scene in this great evening of Shakespeare during which blue flowers wander through the brain.” NZZ am Sonntag

“It’s a fencing match, virtuoso and precise, that is protracted over five painful bouts and dominates the stage with its physical strength and vigour. In this interminable labyrinth of combat, it is as authentic, vital and liberating as it could possibly be. A magnificently classical climax that surpasses even itself.”

“The fact that the ghost of Hamlet’s murdered father should be played by Markus Scheumann, who also plays his murderer, King Claudius, is not only coherent: it is brilliant. And it is even more brilliant because Scheumann seamlessly incorporates this double-faced quality not only in his appearances as a power-hungry politician, but also in his performance as a stone-dead projection for Hamlet.” Tages-Anzeiger


With Markus Scheumann, Inga Busch, Jan Bülow, Gottfried Breitfuss, Edmund Telgenkämper, Benito Bause, Claudius Körber, Iñigo Giner Miranda
Barbara Frey
Set Designer
Bettina Meyer
Costume Designer
Esther Geremus
Iñigo Giner Miranda, Barbara Frey
Andreas Karlaganis
Assistant Director
Maximilian Enderle
Assistant Stage Designer
Selina Puorger
Assistant Costume Designer
Tiziana Ramsauer
Gabriele Seifert
Stage Manager
Aleksandar Sascha Dinevski
Klaus Figge

Image gallery & Videos