Andover High School Theater audiences may remember Will Ketter as Professor Harold Hill in the school’s 2014 production of “The Music Man.”
Now a junior at Hofstra University in New York, Ketter will headline the 68th annual Shakespeare Festival as the title character in William Shakespeare’s “Hamlet” this month.
Ketter is working toward his bachelor of fine arts degree at Hofstra and gives Andover Theater a lot of credit for driving him to become a professional performer.
“For those four years, Andover Theater was everything to me,” Ketter said.
With some urging from Andover director Ann Leaf-Johnson, Ketter sought to make a career out of acting.
“It feeds the soul,” Ketter said.
Ketter will take the stage as Hamlet March 2-12.
He has the rare opportunity to perform on a replica of Shakespeare’s Globe Stage, which Hofstra is calling “the most authentic replica in America.”
“It’s like out of a textbook,” Ketter said. “It feels like going back in time.”
He has been spending a solitary two to three hours each day with his script the past six weeks to prepare to play the Prince of Denmark, in addition to rehearsals.
“It’s such a huge role,” Ketter said.
He agrees with others who have filled Hamlet’s shoes: “Playing Hamlet is so lonely.”
Ketter, son of Greg Ketter and Lisa Freitag, has never seen a full-length production of “Hamlet” performed, so he is uniquely positioned to make his own dramatic choices, for better or worse, he said.