Why are we doing The Three Musketeers instead of a Shakespeare play?

March 4, 2017

As a Shakespeare Theatre, we relish in bringing to life the works of William, so it may come as a surprise to many that here we are showcasing The Three Musketeers, a novel by famed French writer, Alexandre Dumas.


So, why The Three Musketeers you ask?


We asked Haysam Kadri, one of the two directors (with Karl Sine) behind The Three Musketeers feature this month, how a non-Shakespearean play got such a coveted position in our line-up this season.


Q. What is the reasoning behind doing a non-shakespearean play such as The Three Musketeers?

[HK] At the moment I have other plays that are considered classics that we would like to bring to life on our stage. Many of Shakespeare’s contemporaries have penned some strong work, but we also don’t want to limit ourselves in a time period. I think there is a large opportunity to expose what we consider “Classic stories”, and Three Musketeers is our first foray into expanding our mandate.


Q. Would you like to take on another non-shakespearean play? If so, as director or actor?

[HK] I’ve have always been interested in expanding the Shakespeare Company mandate to include classic stories like Alexandre Dumas’ Three Musketeers. We hope to continue this trend moving forward in the future. Directing these stories of epic scope intrigue me. They are also amazing plays to perform in.


Q. What were some of the challenges you came across?

[HK] Definitely the challenge is adapting these larger stories into plays. It is challenging to find the balance of honouring the novel, and at the same time telling the story in a lean and efficient manner.


Q. Did you find any pleasant similarities in Dumas’ work that could relate to Shakespeare and the experience you have therein?

[HK] Shakespeare’s plays and what we deem as a Classic tale both share large scopes in storytelling. They have extraordinary characters in extraordinary circumstances and our audience has grown to love that.


Another great reason we choose The Three Musketeers as an outlier to our namesake’s seasonal theme is Karl Sine. Karl is the winner of the Betty Mitchell Award for Best Fight Direction in 2015 for Othello, and in 2013 for Land of the Dead. The Three Musketeers being a fight-heavy play gave Karl a great canvas to work with, one we are very excited to show.


We hope you will join us for our rendition of The Three Musketeers this March 24 to April 18, with a preview on Thursday, March 23rd!

The Shakespeare Company and Ground Zero Theatre present
with the Generous Support of Hit & Myth Productions

The Three Musketeers


Adapted by Joanie McBrien and Dave Garrett – from the novel by Alexandre Dumas

Directed by Haysam Kadri and Karl Sine
Fight Direction by Karl Sine

March 24 – April 8, 2016