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“To be or not to be? That is the question.” For David Carver, it was a big, fat yes.
The prominent music promoter from St. John’s has purchased and will produce an internationally renowned theatrical music production.
Carver recently acquired the touring rights to "Hamlet — the Rock Musical," an impressive stage musical that mixes high-energy vocal and dance performances to give an emotional interpretation of the Shakespearean play, "Hamlet."
It’s a new twist on the rock shows Carver has become known for over the years.
The 57-year-old has attracted some of the world’s biggest rock acts to Newfoundland — including Bob Dylan, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Van Morrison, Heart, Blake Shelton, Tom Cochrane at the height of his career and Richard Marx. He’s brought several others to the East Coast, too, including Bob Seger, Sheryl Crow, Matchbox Twenty and the Goo Goo Dolls.
“I’m always looking for what's next — the next adventure,” Carver told The Telegram Thursday. “I think I have achieved most of what I wanted in the space I was working over the last 30 years.”
Carver said he saw this as a great opportunity to maximize composer Cliff Jones’s injection of rock music into the play.
“It creates endless creative choices in building marketing and ticketing programs that reach a young audience, engaging them in the theatrical music experience,” said Carver, who lives part-time in Los Angeles.
“What I want is for the audiences to leave the theatres feeling one of two things – I went to see a play about Hamlet and a ‘rock concert’ broke out, or I went to a ‘rock concert’ and a play about Hamlet broke out, and in either case, it was a captivating musical, visual and artistic performance.”
The 2020 world tour will include state-of-the-art production values intended to support and enhance the artistic choices of the actors, singers, dancers and musicians.
“Placing this important part of my artistic life in the care of David Carver Music was an easy decision when you consider their career in music and the incredible passion they have for this production,” Jones said.
The musical wraps up a successful 20-show run Saturday at the Confederation of the Arts in Charlottetown, P.E.I.
The world tour will begin in late January 2020, with shows expected to be held in various cities in Canada, Australia, the U.K. and the United States.
Canadian venues and dates are still being finalized, but Carver hopes it will come to this province.
“As a Newfoundlander, I’ve been on the receiving end of hearing about cross-Canada tours that don’t start or end in Newfoundland,” he said.
“I don't want to be on the delivery end of that.”