Charlie Dupré Presents: The Stories of Shakey P

The idea of using rap as a linguistic art form to present a ‘playful reimagining’ of many of Shakespeare’s finest work is something young Charlie Dupré successfully pulls off both skillfully and artistically. As a fan of both rap music and Shakespeare, Dupré brings them together, declaring that ‘iambic pentameter is essentially a line of rap’. By doing so, he not only gives rap a new intelligent lyrical twist but also gives Shakespeare’s work a fresh and relevant vibe. It would be a great show for kids if perhaps there was a little less swearing because it essentially makes Shakespeare seem ‘cool’.

Whether you’re familiar with the work of the Bard or not, Dupré manages to educate as well as entertain by capturing the essence of each Shakespeare tale he covers so that no one is left scratching their heads whilst everyone else is laughing. He first created the scene of a young Shakespeare and his older nemesis Marlowe engaging in an epic rap battle during break time at school before we were met with the ghost of Macbeth reflecting on the events leading up to his death, asking himself where he went wrong.

Taking a healthy dose of inspiration from a well-known Eminem song, Dupré delivered Othello as you’ve quite possibly never heard it before and then attempted to brighten the mood with the retelling of his favourite Shakespearean comedy Much Ado About Nothing via the narrative of Claudio giving his speech as Best Man at the wedding of Benedick and Beatrice.

As demonstrated throughout the show, particularly in the likes of his take on Marlowe’s Faustus and the show’s final piece which sees Hamlet converse and often argue with his demonic inner voice, Dupré’s talent for playing multiple characters of multiple vocal styles whilst maintaining that precise yet seemingly effortless timing is truly outstanding. If you like Shakespeare but are looking for something a bit different then definitely check this show out. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed.

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Performances

The Blurb

Charlie is a pulsing concoction of literary influences and kinetic verbal onslaughts. Join him for this spoken word exploration of the works of Shakespeare, and one or two stories of his own.

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