Wrestling with Shakespeare

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MANY actors put their bodies on the line while preparing for a role, including Invercargill’s Dryw McArthur.

Playing Orlando in Shakespeare in the Park production As You Like It, which will be performed in Invercargill’s Otepuni Gardens next month, McArthur will be sharing the stage with a real-life wrestler for an integral scene in the show.

“It’s kind of how everything gets started in the play really. It sets all of the bits in motion,” McArthur said.

“In the process of this scene as well is where Orlando meets Rosalind, which is kind of the central love story in the play.”

Southern Pro-Wrestling’s JK Moody (Josh Curran) and Kane Khan (Kane Bates) would share the role of Charles the wrestler in the production.

Bates said they were teaching McArthur some of the basics of wrestling for the choreographed scene.

“Learning it is like a series of complicated trust falls, which is a wee bit stressful, but it’s fun,” McArthur said.

“It’s all about working together in wrestling,” Bates said.

‘It’s going to be a really fun show, to be in and to watch,” McArthur said.

Bard’s likeable comedy

ONE of Shakespeare’s best-loved and most often quoted comedies, As You Like It, will be performed in Invercargill’s Otepuni Gardens next month.

Joining a stellar local cast – including Dryw McArthur and Fliss Crossley-Pritchard, both fresh from stints at London’s Globe Theatre with Shakespeare’s Globe Centre New Zealand – will be Mayor Tim Shadbolt, current Southern Pro-Wrestling champion JK Moody and Southland singer-songwriter Liv Cochrane.

Actor and Shakespeare in the Park Charitable Trust (SITP) trustee Jade Gillies is taking up the mantle of director for the first time.

“It’s definitely been challenging but exciting at the same time.

“It’s been a great opportunity for me to sit on the other side of the stage this year,” Gillies said.

Wrestling, children and famous Southlanders promise to make this season one of the best and most innovative yet.

“I think people are going to really enjoy As You Like It, and I can’t wait for them to see it,” Gillies said.

Venture Southland (VS) creative projects manager Angela Newell said it was another wonderful collaboration between SITP and VS.

“After 18 years of Shakespeare in Southland it’s a testament to the Bard that we can always find a new and exciting interpretation of his work,” Newell said.

Shakespeare in the Park: As You Like It, February 6-10, Otepuni Gardens, Invercargill. Tickets are available at i-SITE and eventfinda.co.nz

You Like It cast:

Orlando – Dryw McArthur

Rosalind – Libby Fraser

Celia – Maggie Watts

Oliver – Mat Rohan

Adam/Sir Oliver Martext – Nick Round-Turner

Duke Frederick/Duchess Senior – Angela Newell

Touchstone – Sarah McCarthy

Audrey – Brogan Campbell

Charles The Wrestler – JK Moody/Kane Khan

Jacques – Fliss Crossley-Pritchard

Corin – Barry Macdonald

Le Beau/William – Ben Knowles

Silvius – Ricky Andrews

Phoebe – Sarah Boniface

Hymen, God Of Marriage – Tim Shadbolt

Puppeteer – Kirsty Tait

Band – Led By Liv Cochrane

Troupe of young performers

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