TEACHING HAMLET REVIEWS & AWARDS
- 2011 Montreal Fringe Festival (premiere)
Runner-up for "Best Production Award" - from Centaur Theatre
- 2012 Wildside Theatre Festival at Montreal's Centaur Theatre
- 2012 Winnipeg Fringe Festival
- 2013 Toronto Fringe Festival
- 2017 Ottawa Fringe Festival
"Rating: FIVE STARS! It's intelligent, witty and well-acted; educational without being preachy. It's just great, really, and full of big laughs."
REVIEW of Teaching Hamlet by Al Rae, CBC-Manitoba
"an intelligent, hilarious word wrangle over authorship of the plays, as the worlds of theatre and academia are cleverly juxtaposed."
REVIEW of Teaching Hamlet by Pat Donnelly, Montreal Gazette
"Keir Cutler's funny and informative two-hander unpacks the great Shakespeare authorship question in a way that's entertaining for insiders and newcomers.
The well-paced action follows naive Hamlet actor Connor Hamilton as he gets seriously schooled on the minutiae of this academic obsession by the stuffy head of an obscure organization advocating that the Duke of Oxford produced the Bard's canon.
The odd-couple pairing works well, and a heartwarming tale unfolds. A great example of pedagogical theatre, this show has plenty of laughs, especially for academics who know all too well how utterly world-consuming the most trivial aspects of history can become."
REVIEW of Teaching Hamlet by Jordan Bimm NOW Magazine, rating: NNNN
"I have been a fan of Keir Cutler's solos for a long time ... and - poof! - Cutler shows up ... with a two-hander. This is a self-contained one-act play which relies on a good story and, especially, the give and take of solid actors who can fill the space and Cutler has found himself a hell of an accomplice in Brett Watson. ... Watson plays every note in a stunning tour de force. Cutler wisely leaves space for his story and the inevitable melt-down. Repercussion AD Paul Hopkins' direction is sleight-of-hand....It's a play that holds the promise of importance."
REVIEW of Teaching Hamlet by Gaetan L. Charlebois,
THE CHARLEBOIS POST
"Keir Cutler's highly acclaimed two-man show Teaching Hamlet (dir. Paul Hopkins) is a delightful meditation on modern notions of authenticity and identity, brimming with insight, social satire and laughs. The play debuted to rave reviews at the 2011 Montreal Fringe Festival, where it was runner-up for Best English Production, and was given five stars at the Winnipeg Fringe Festival, where it was described as "intelligent, witty and well-acted." It is currently playing at the Robert Gill theatre as part of the Toronto Fringe Festival.
Teaching Hamlet centres around Joe (Cutler), a decidedly cerebral academic consumed by a desire to prove that Shakespeare was in fact the Earl of Oxford, and Conner Hamilton (Brett Watson), the celebrated Shakespearean actor Joe has hired to promote his peculiar cause in a video destined for YouTube. The play consists of an hour-long verbal sparring match between this unlikely duo, peppered with homages to the Bard. Cutler's script masterfully juxtaposes the world of academia with the entertainment industry, suggesting that in the age of public relations, the two industries are not as different as they might appear. Though Joe's and Connor's backgrounds, motivations and methods are vastly different, it soon becomes clear that they are both after the same end --to get what they want at any cost. The inherent narcissism of both characters acts as the perfect catalyst for Cutler's satirical take on the epidemic of self-aggrandizement characteristic of the information age. The play's stripped down aesthetic-only a chair and camera tripod adorn the stage throughout—perfectly sets off the witty, psychologically complex script, and the duo's compelling performances."
REVIEW of Teaching Hamlet by Annie Hodgins, Theatromania.
"While many Fringe artists would be only too happy to find themselves in Keir Cutler's shoes, the expectations that greet any new show from the creator of Teaching Shakespeare and other gems must be more than a little daunting at times. Not to worry, though, this latest piece is as brilliant as anything he's ever done. Once again, Keir has succeeded in taking potentially dense and obscure subject matter and creating a piece that enlightens and entertains while simultaneously inducing howls of laughter. Brett Watson as a vain and self-absorbed actor is the perfect foil for Cutler's manically obsessed Shakespearean scholar. It is a rare pleasure to watch the sparks fly as these two masters of their craft face off against each other."
Robbie Dillon, NET BUZZ
"Sharp and witty - sure to please!" Sharman Yarnall, CJAD.