Hudson Shakespeare Co. Presents: “The Spanish Tragedy”
Join us for the Hudson Shakespeare Company’s performance of The Spanish Tragedy.
The Spanish Tragedy is an Elizabethan drama written by Thomas Kyd sometime between 1582 and 1592. Later versions
of the play have largely included additional scenes and bits of dialogue which have been attributed to William
Shakespeare. The Spanish Tragedy was HUGELY popular in its day and even was responsible for establishing a new type
of drama called the revenge tragedy. It’s plot contains several violent murders and includes, as one of its characters, a
personification of the spirit of Revenge. The play was often copied or referred to in other works of the time period.
Many of its elements are apparent in Shakespeare’s other works such as Hamlet and Titus Andronicus. Many of the
Spanish Tragedy elements such as a play within a play to trap a murderer, a ghost intent on vengeance, and a man who
goes mad after his son is murdered, appear in Shakespeare’s Hamlet.
Now in its 27th year, Hudson Shakespeare Company is no stranger when it comes to performing Shakespeare’s lesser
known works. In previous years they have performed a companion piece to Midsummer called Two Noble Kinsmen
(2007), Shakespeare’s “lost play” Cardenio (2012), a Jacobean tragicomedy called The Arden of Faversham (2014), and a
history play called Edward III (2015). These are plays that have been attributed to the collection of works known as the
‘Shakespeare Apocrypha’. “These are plays that scholars have attributed some part of the play to Shakespeare’s
writing.” says director Noelle Fair. “Shakespeare may or may not have contributed to these plays. There’s no way to
know for sure. However, scholars can use computer studies called stylometry to find quirks unique to Shakespeare to
make a pretty good determination. In this case, it looks like he contributed a few additional scenes after the first original
Hudson Shakespeare recommends that The Spanish Tragedy is rated PG-13 for violence performed on stage and may
not be appropriate for children under 13.
Register below or call 973-744-0500 ext. 2235.