Columbia College Chicago Theatre Department’s Mainstage Season Features ‘Hamlet’ Feb. 7-17 at Getz Theatre Center


The Columbia College Chicago Theatre Department‘s 2023-24 Mainstage Season continues with Hamlet, the classic tragedy by William Shakespeare. The production runs February 7 through 17 in the Courtyard Theatre of the Getz Theatre Center of Columbia College, located at 72 E. 11th St. in Chicago’s South Loop. Student discounts are available. For tickets and more information – including a complete cast and production team list for this LIVE, IN-PERSON production – click here.

Set in medieval Denmark, the play concerns Prince Hamlet and his attempts to exact revenge against his uncle, Claudius, who has murdered Hamlet’s father in order to seize his throne and marry Hamlet’s mother. The production is not intended for children under the age of 13.

Dr. Jimmy Noriega

“Our season this year asks, ‘What makes a classic?’,” says Dr. Jimmy Noriega, the Allen and Lynn Turner Chair of Theatre at Columbia College, in a program note. “In our season—On the Town, Hamlet, The Bluest Eye, and Pippin—our directors, casts, and crews are re-examining these texts and creating worlds where we not only look into our past, but also examine our current state of affairs and imagine where we want to go in the future. These plays ask us to interrogate our relationship with a multitude of histories, cultures, and identities. The creative teams working on these productions are presenting new approaches to these celebrated texts and are offering the audiences and artists involved a new way of imagining the ‘classic’ and its place in our own theatre history.”

Jeremy Cohn

Hamlet features an all-student cast and a creative team of students and professionals under the direction of faculty member Jeremy Cohn. In a program note, Cohn writes:

“How do we cope with the unbearable burdens passed down to us by previous generations? How do we end generational cycles of violence and misogyny? How do we find purpose in life if we are ultimately powerless to control our fate? How do we determine truth and moral action in a crumbling society committed to deception and manipulation? What is the line between social dissent and madness? How do we live meaningfully knowing that our time on earth is finite? Hamlet does not give pat answers to any of these questions. It is not a logical or didactic play. What it provides is a subversive space for these questions to be wrestled with in community, and an opportunity for us to potentially transcend them together. It is an apotheosis stuffed into an action movie, and honestly a pretty bonkers ride. Shakespeare was a maximalist. This production offers a chance to move past the Victorian-imposed melancholy stereotypical of this play into the wild heart of what the act of witnessing can provide for our society.”

“In Elizabethan England there was no barrier between actors and audience,” Cohn continues. “Our production has embraced an update of that practice. You are a vital character in every scene. You will not be asked to physically join the action of the play (don’t worry), but we will be consulting with you, receiving judgment from you, and asking you to lend us your voices and hands throughout.”