A Fool’s Paradise: 30 Shakespeare Scenes in 60 Minutes

For a fast-paced, fun show filled with audience interaction, A Fool’s Paradise might be for you. This talented troupe of five women set themselves the terrifying task of performing 30 scenes from Shakespeare in an hour, having the audience shout out numbers and filling in bingo sheets provided, making it a rapidly paced, competitive and fun show to spectate.

A fun one for the family, and for something a bit light and ve

The idea - which I imagine derives from the Neo-futurists’ Too Much Light Makes the Baby Go Blind, another past Fringe favourite where players attempt to perform 30 plays in the same time constraint - is dynamic and fun, great for people familiar and unfamiliar with Shakespeare’s work alike. Alongside some of the most renowned scenes from Shakespeare, including the Romeo and Juliet balcony scene, Pyramus and Thisbe from A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Hamlet’s ‘To be or not to be’ with a twist, other scenes are thrown in from a variety of plays, with a variety of delivery styles.

If you’ve ever fancied watching Pericles being summarised in two minutes, or wondered what Timon of Athens was like performed by sock puppets, then A Fool’s Paradise is for you. Audience shout-outs dictate which scene is performed when, with everyone in competition with each other to complete their Bingo sheet. On the day I attended, the audience was made up of all ages, and everyone laughed a great deal throughout, myself included.

Some of the scenes were surprisingly intense and moving with an impressive range of repertoire being exhibited in such a short space of time. The awesome foursome Baltimore-based Logan Davidson, Lisa Hodsoll, Jenna Rossman and Sabrina Thornton do a wonderful job of performing a plethora of roles under quite strict time constraints.

The variety of A Fool’s Paradise means that it is impossible to get bored and the ladies clearly enjoy what they do. A fun one for the family, and for something a bit light and very upbeat. 

Reviews by Fiona Russell

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The Blurb

Six Actors. 60 minutes. 30 Shakespeare scenes. Can they do it? If not, someone gets a pie in the face. Seriously. We got the pies. You choose what to see next, play bingo for prizes and explore some of Shakespeare’s favourites, and lesser known pieces, too. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll get chocolate tossed into the audience. Just the way Shakespeare intended.