The last time Shakespeare's much-loved tragedy was performed at the Rose Theatre in London Bridge the great bard himself would have been around to see it, staged as it was more than 400 years ago in 1594.
Now in the atmospheric - and freezing - setting of the archaeological dig which is the Rose the play is brought to life in the most memorable and haunting of ways.
Theatre purists may recoil in horror at this truncated version which runs well under two hours without an interval and is performed by four actors all of whom, bar Hamlet, play multiple parts.
But they ought perhaps to make an exception considering that the play is performed throughout on a tiny platform above the excavation site of the original Elizabethan theatre, itself used to full effect.
Covered in a few inches of water to help preserve it from cracks the site makes a perfect setting for Ophelia's descent into madness as she sings by the lake in which she later drowns.
The intimate and dilapidated surroundings also provide a perfect backdrop to the dwindling sanity of Hamlet, wonderfully portrayed by Jonathan Broadbent (pictured left), who makes the most of audience inclusiveness to compensate for the scarcity of the cast.
His crisp delivery holds the attention in a production that at least doesn't cut out any of the play's oft-cited quotes. It even includes the use of a radio tuner to broadcast the spooky "murder most foul" utterances of the ghost of Hamlet's father.
The suitably imposing Liam Mc-Kenna is wonderful as both Claudius and Polonius, typifying a production which takes care to avoid any confusion in the changeover of multiple roles performed by the same actor.
Overall, the experience is much like seeing the play performed in a grotto and due to the small space there's scarcely room for more than 50 in the audience and even less room for actors to navigate around.
Director Martin Parr expressed his excitement at the opportunity to produce a "living room/chamber" Hamlet to reclaim the play from larger spaces but concedes that at times it is a "painfully intimate" piece.
Yet despite the unavoidable shortfalls imposed by the atmospheric location this is still among the better Shakespeare adaptations you're likely to see on the fringe circuit.