A new adaptation of the Shakespeare classic King Lear features a bizarre cast – one human and nine sheep! 24-year-old Alasdair Saksena plays the human, a director who tries to persuade his cast of sheep to perform the tragedy. ‘King Lear with Sheep’ is, needless to say, every bit as absurd and hilarious as it sounds.
The play is the brainchild of actor Saksena, writer Missouri Williams, and producer Lucie Elven – all in their early 20s. The idea came about after Missouri, having worked on a tour of King Lear with a human cast, got sick of them. “There’s little references to sheep within the text that I think planted the idea in Missouri’s head,” Saksena said. “And so she decided to do King Lear with sheep and me. And I thought, you can’t really say no to that, can you?”
According to Saksena, the reason why this adaptation works is the thin line between tragedy and comedy. “Lear is so tragic and sheep are so untragic that it just sort of works – it comes together and is either desperately sad or desperately funny depending on what mood is catching at that particular point of time,” he explained. ..