Premiere US Premiere
Production Language English
Country of Origin England, United Kingdom
Description “By my troth, your town is troubled with unruly boys,” said Dromio upon stepping foot in wild, wooly Ephesus. And unruly boys ruled the stage when the all-male British Shakespeare troupe Propeller returned to BAM in 2011 with their slaphappy, slapstick production of The Comedy Errors. Propeller Artistic Director Edward Hall transposed the setting to an anything-goes Mexican resort town. As he explained during a related Artist Talk at BAM: “A place of madness seemed to be a holiday island – places where people enjoyed themselves and got into terrible trouble.” The boys sported sombreros, guzzled tequila, and were accompanied by a mariachi band. The production was farcical, a free-for-all of pratfalls and sight gags, including a lit sparkler up the bum. Ben Brantley in The New York Times dubbed it, “relentlessly punch drunk,” and Scott Brown in his Vulture review, called it “a boys’ night out that just won’t quit.”
During the BAM Artist talk, Hall, son of Sir Peter Hall, founder of the Royal Shakespeare Company, explained his interest in sprinkling Shakespeare with contemporary references to pop culture: “Shakespeare was a very popular writer, and most of the people who watched his plays couldn’t read or write, but they went to see his plays in huge numbers. They liked popular culture, too.” This production of The Comedy of Errors marked Propeller’s 5th appearance at BAM.