The 15-member company exuberantly chews up every square inch of the limited Fountainhead stage as they expose the political shenanigans of Norwegian Chancellor Sternborg (Thomas Tofel) and his henchman Eight Eyes (Robert Clendenin).
The pair’s murderous efforts to manipulate the governments of Norway and Denmark are complicated, however, by the return of Norway’s warrior prince, the roaring alcoholic Fortinbras (Andrew Shaifer).
In an amazingly farcical tour de force, Shaifer’s Fortinbras stumbles his way besottedly over the deliciously evil maneuverings, and pratfalls onto the throne of Norway.
In a sea of outstanding performances, particular mention must go to Lisa Smith and Suzanne Krull, who embody the grotesquely funny degradation of civilization’s “everyman”; Clendenin’s geekish but chillingly homicidal Eight Eyes; Amy Goddard’s lusty portrayal of the maiden who gives her body and then her head to Fortinbras; and Ron Livingston, whose stoic portrayal of Hamlet gives new meaning to “melancholy Dane.”
Obscured in all this virtuosity is the through line of Glowacki’s text: that all political idealism that seeks power can only succeed by corrupting itself.
Director Fickman would have achieved greater success if he had focused less on the jokes and a bit more on Glowacki.
The set, lighting and costume designs of Gregory Van Horn, Todd Bakerian and Elizabeth Tobias, respectively, aid the fast-paced action.