Delaware Shakespeare’s Community Tour performance of Romeo and Juliet was very entertaining and fun. The theater seating style was theater-in-the-round. The audience was on all sides. Moreover, the seating was in a square-like formation. The actors entered through aisles between the seating throughout the show. The scenery was minimal. There were no background drops or sets. The actors only worked with black cubes, a ladder, and a gate with flowers on it. The two main characters Romeo and Juliet are star-crossed lovers whose love is torn between their families. Romeo a Montague and Juliet a Capulet, families’ are mortal enemies making their relationship forbidden. Though I was expecting this production along with its characters to be modernized, it was not. The characters were traditionally dressed and spoke in traditional Shakespearean vernacular. One aspect of the performance I really enjoyed was the incorporation of live music. There were a guitarist and a drummer. Music was played during scene transitions and even during some scenes. For example, during the fight scene between Romeo and Tybalt, the actors used small wooden drumsticks and tapped them together to symbolize striking each other. They tapped their sticks to the beat of the drum. This added more emphasis to each strike and made the fight more intense.
I have heard of Romeo and Juliet; however, I’ve never watched or read the play in its entirety. I had only ever seen certain clips and read excerpts from the play. Though the play did not have an elaborate set and used minimal props, I still thoroughly enjoyed the performance. I believe this was because of the actors’ fantastic performances. It was extremely apparent that the actors all are well-versed in Shakespeare. All the actors seemed as though they were very familiar with the text and understood it well. Having performed Shakespeare before, I can relate to how hard it can be to study and interpret his text. If you don’t understand it neither will the audience. I also loved the casts’ chemistry. Especially between Romeo and Juliet. The actors that portrayed the couple made you fall in love with their playfulness towards each other and longing looks. I really enjoyed the show and I am glad I attended it.