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COSTUME WORN BY KENNETH BRANAGH
Director: Adrian Noble
Designer: Bob Crowley
'a form of visual poetry, conscious of the emotional reverberations of shape and colour'.
This is how Bob Crowley described his approach to the design of this production of Hamlet. He was speaking in an interview with The Times newspaper. Crowley made it clear that all his design choices had a reason that responded directly to the text.
In this production Hamlet (Kenneth Branagh) put on the straight-jacket to bait Polonius. The choice of a straight-jacket is a strong visual link to madness. Whether the audience agree that Hamlet is mad or not is one of the driving forces behind discussions about his character and the play as a whole.
When he played Hamlet, Branagh had not performed in Stratford for seven years. He had already played the character three times before. Critics described the production as being 'lucid' and 'illuminating'.
© 2011 Royal Shakespeare Company