Theater Info for the Washington DC region

Montgomery Playhouse I Hate Hamlet

By • Sep 22nd, 2008 • Category: Reviews

Listen to our review of The Montgomery Playhouse’s production of I Hate Hamlet [MP3 3:17 3.0MB].

I Hate Hamlet
Montgomery Playhouse
Asbury Methodist Village Rosborough Center in Gaithersburg, MD
$16/$14 Students and Seniors
Through October 5th

This is the Show Biz Radio review of I Hate Hamlet performed by Montgomery Playhouse at the Asbury Methodist Village Rosborough Center in Gaithersburg, Maryland. I saw the performance on Saturday September 20, 2008.

This show was funny, with special effects creating a spooky and comical mood. The timing was well done and the pace was over all smooth. The audience was kind of small, but seemed to enjoy the performance. The set was incredible and very detailed.

I Hate Hamlet is a comedy in two acts by Paul Rudnick. A young and successful television actor relocates to New York, where he rents a marvelous, gothic apartment. With his television career in limbo, the actor is offered the opportunity to play Hamlet onstage, but there’s one problem, he hates Hamlet. His dilemma deepens with the entrance of John Barrymore’s ghost, who arrives intoxicated and in full costume to the apartment that once was his. The contrast between the two actors, the towering, dissipated Barrymore whose Hamlet was the greatest of his time, and Andrew Rally, hot young television star, leads to a wildly funny duel over women, art, success, duty, television, and yes, the apartment.

Andrew Rally, the confused, frustrated, and sex starved television turned Shakespearean actor, was played by Jim Camlek. Camlek brought intensity to the role that was serious and believable.

Remember however that this is a comedy. Some of the comic relief was provided by J. McAndrew Breen as John Barrymore’s ghost. Breen was laid back and provided much of the humor of the evening. He also had some serious moments that drew your attention. The fight scene in the first act was very well choreographed and realistic. The fight Choreographer was David Dossey.

Rally’s girlfriend, Deirdre McDavey, was played by Melissa Powell. She came from a happy childhood and was so peppy that she was part of Andrew’s frustration. She had her serious moment in Act II when she began to realize life was not always a bed of roses.

The supporting cast, the realtor (Veronica Lee Johnston), the talent agent (Kathy Fallow), and the Hollywood producer (Ken Kemp), were a nice complement to the frustration Rally was experiencing.

The set for I Hate Hamlet was great. When the dust covers were removed from Rally’s second hand furniture in the second Act, the living area looked very much like Barrymore’s house when he lived there. There was even a picture of him on the wall. The Set Designer was David Jones.

I Hate Hamlet ran approximately two hours with one intermission. It is playing through Sunday, October 5th. Fridays and Saturdays at 8 pm and Sunday matinees at 2 pm at the Asbury Methodist Village Rosborough Center in Gaithersburg, Maryland.

After you’ve seen the show, feel free to leave your comments here at ShowBiz We’d also like to invite you to join our free mailing list so you can stay informed with theater events in the DC Region.

And now, on with the show.

Director’s Notes

For several days, I had been toiling with the direct content of the Director’s Notes. There were so many directions that I could have taken them, and yet, as I found myself starting on a topic, I found myself starting over, not knowing what these paragraphs should discuss.

One night, at the theater, I had an epiphany. We were in the midst of rehearsing a scene, the first scene on the new set, and one of the actors just start laughing, just from what a counterpart was doing on stage. We had stopped what we were doing so everyone could see what was going on, and what was making us laugh. When the action was repeated, the entire on stage cast broke out in laughter.

It was at that moment that I realized that this show, and the group of individuals working on this production, was special. They truly do enjoy working together, and they are very supportive of one another. I have seen, throughout this rehearsal process, one of the most professional casts, from top to bottom, that I have ever had the privilege and the pleasure to work with. With all the minor setbacks that this show has encountered, they have taken it in stride, and moved two steps forward every time. They have noodled through awkward blocking moments to make scenes more pleasing to the eye. They have embraced every person working behind the scenes as someone who is a part of the show, and not just someone who is merely working on the show.

The amount of professionalism and camaraderie displayed by these individuals is second to none. It has been a distinct honor to work with these individuals. It is also an honor to present these same individuals to you in this evening’s performance.

Enjoy the show!

Director’s Notes are Copyright 2008 Frank DeSando for the Montgomery Playhouse, Reprinted with permission.

Related Merchandise


  • Felicia Dantine: Veronica Lee Johnson
  • Andrew Rally: Jim Camlek
  • Deirdre McDavey: Melissa Powell
  • Lillian Troy: Kathy Fallow
  • John Sydney Barrymore: J. McAndrew Breen
  • Gary Peter Lefkowitz: Ken Kemp


  • Producers: Melinda Fisher and Frank DeSando
  • Director: Frank DeSando
  • Assistant Director: Omar Latiri
  • Stage Manager: Mary Alexander
  • Set Design: David Jones
  • Master Carpenter: David Jones
  • Set Construction/Swing Gang: David Jones, Jim Camlek, Nancy Davis, Frank DeSando, Melinda Fisher, Ken Kemp, Omar Latiri
  • Lighting Design: Matt Datcher
  • Sound Design: Matt Datcher
  • Lighting Team/Gaffers: John Hutson, Paul Shoop, Matt Datcher
  • Sound Mixers: Matt Datcher, Frank DeSando
  • Lighting Technician: George Fitel
  • Sound Technician: Patrick Hughes
  • Fight Choreographer: David Dossey
  • Fight Captain: Omar Latiri
  • Voice Overs: Jim Camlek, Frank DeSando, Omar Latiri
  • Trail Burst Nugget Singers: Meg Johannessen, Katie Mays
  • Floor Managers: Tara Bradford, Melinda Fisher
  • Set Dressing: Kay Coupe
  • Properties: Jim Camlek, Kay Coupe, Frank DeSando, Kathy Fallow
  • Special Makeup/Hair Design: Aimee Dorsey
  • Costume Design: Malinda Smith, Mary Schmidt
  • Adjustment Administrator: Meg Johannessen
  • Photography: Kay Coupe
  • Load-In Crew: David Jones, Mary Alexander, Tara Bradford, Jim Camlek, Nancy Davis, Frank DeSando, Melinda Fisher, Lisa Holland Anderson, Veronica Johnston, Ken Kemp, Paul Shoop, Newman Smith, Joy Wyne
  • Light Hang Crew: John Hutson, Paul Shoop, Matt Datcher
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