Shakespeare in the Park stabs Trump

Readability

Shakespeare in the Park stabs Trump

Twelve years ago the fam­ily and I headed to Broad­way to watch Shakespeare’s Julius Cae­sar. Den­zel Wash­ing­ton played Bru­tus, Eamonn Walker was Marc Anthony, and William Sadler was the title character.

The pro­duc­tion was staged as a Nazi-​uniformed cast traipsed among the ruins while shoot­ing machine guns, for a touch of poetic license. In the most mem­o­rable scene, Sadler, naked on a mas­sage table and cov­ered with a sheet, sat up and flashed the entire audience.

You can get flashed for free in NYC, so Sadler’s ges­ture didn’t add any insights to Shakespeare’s play, other than per­haps hint that Cae­sar had some­thing in com­mon with the aver­age sub­way perv.

Poetic license now extends to a Trump-​inspired Julius Cae­sar:

//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

The choice of Julius Cae­sar for the annual pro­gram is one drip­ping with sub­text, cho­sen delib­er­ately for the sup­posed par­al­lels between the Roman dic­ta­tor and Trump. A descrip­tion of the play on The Pub­lic Theater’s web­site states that “Shakespeare’s polit­i­cal mas­ter­piece has never felt more contemporary.”

It describes the Roman leader as “Mag­netic, pop­ulist, irrev­er­ent,” and “bent on absolute power.” The descrip­tion also notes that a “small band of patri­ots, devoted to the country’s demo­c­ra­tic tra­di­tions, must decide how to oppose him.”

Not only does this Cae­sar do the full Monty, but blood gushes freely, too:

[Salem Media sales man­ager Laura] Sheaf­fer also said of the scene where the actor play­ing Trump/​Caesar steps out of a bath­tub stark naked, that it struck her as dis­re­spect­ful and a “mock­ery of the office of the Pres­i­dent.” Why, yes it is.

In the fol­low­ing scene, Trump/​Caesar is attacked by the Sen­a­tors and stabbed to death as an Amer­i­can flag hov­ers over­head, accord­ing to Sheaf­fer. “They had the full mur­der scene onstage, and blood was spew­ing every­where out of his body. To be hon­est I thought it was shock­ing and dis­taste­ful,” Sheaf­fer continued.

The cog­ni­tive dis­so­nance between these expres­sions of free speech while their sup­port­ers claim that Trump is a tyrant is noth­ing short of amazing.

They ought to try stag­ing Julius Cae­sar in Havana with Raul Cas­tro as the title char­ac­ter, and see what happens.

But that’s Cuba, the com­mu­nist par­adise where NYC’s mayor DeBla­sio hon­ey­mooned while the noble sav­ages starved. Man­hat­tan elites will likely push for this pro­duc­tion to move on to the Broad­way stage where the “racist, sex­ist, homo­pho­bic, xeno­pho­bic, Islam­o­pho­bic, you name it” hoi pol­loi would have to spend big bucks to get schooled along with chil­dren on field trips.

Back in the early 2oth Cen­tury, the French came up with the Grand Guig­nol, which was acclaimed as avant-​garde for being gross as it fea­tured “the gori­est, most twisted imag­in­ings of the famed theater’s writ­ers and its troupe members.”

The Grand Guig­nol could not com­pete with the real-​life hor­rors unleashed dur­ing World War II. While fake blood gushes at Shake­speare in the Park, over in Lon­don real blood flows on the streets from the vic­tims of Islamists.

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz writes in U. S. and Latin Amer­ica at Fausta’s blog.

Twelve years ago the family and I headed to Broadway to watch Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. Denzel Washington played Brutus, Eamonn Walker was Marc Anthony, and William Sadler was the title character.

The production was staged as a Nazi-uniformed cast traipsed among the ruins while shooting machine guns, for a touch of poetic license. In the most memorable scene, Sadler, naked on a massage table and covered with a sheet, sat up and flashed the entire audience.

You can get flashed for free in NYC, so Sadler’s gesture didn’t add any insights to Shakespeare’s play, other than perhaps hint that Caesar had something in common with the average subway perv.

Poetic license now extends to a Trump-inspired Julius Caesar:

//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js

 

The choice of Julius Caesar for the annual program is one dripping with subtext, chosen deliberately for the supposed parallels between the Roman dictator and Trump. A description of the play on The Public Theater’s website states that “Shakespeare’s political masterpiece has never felt more contemporary.”

It describes the Roman leader as “Magnetic, populist, irreverent,” and “bent on absolute power.” The description also notes that a “small band of patriots, devoted to the country’s democratic traditions, must decide how to oppose him.”

Not only does this Caesar do the full Monty, but blood gushes freely, too:

[Salem Media sales manager Laura] Sheaffer also said of the scene where the actor playing Trump/Caesar steps out of a bathtub stark naked, that it struck her as disrespectful and a “mockery of the office of the President.” Why, yes it is.

In the following scene, Trump/Caesar is attacked by the Senators and stabbed to death as an American flag hovers overhead, according to Sheaffer. “They had the full murder scene onstage, and blood was spewing everywhere out of his body. To be honest I thought it was shocking and distasteful,” Sheaffer continued.

The cognitive dissonance between these expressions of free speech while their supporters claim that Trump is a tyrant is nothing short of amazing.

They ought to try staging Julius Caesar in Havana with Raul Castro as the title character, and see what happens.

But that’s Cuba, the communist paradise where NYC’s mayor DeBlasio honeymooned while the noble savages starved. Manhattan elites will likely push for this production to move on to the Broadway stage where the “racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamophobic, you name it” hoi polloi would have to spend big bucks to get schooled along with children on field trips.

Back in the early 2oth Century, the French came up with the Grand Guignol, which was acclaimed as avant-garde for being gross as it featured “the goriest, most twisted imaginings of the famed theater’s writers and its troupe members.”

The Grand Guignol could not compete with the real-life horrors unleashed during World War II. While fake blood gushes at Shakespeare in the Park, over in London real blood flows on the streets from the victims of Islamists.

Fausta Rodríguez Wertz writes in U. S. and Latin America at Fausta’s blog.