Monday, June 28, 2010

Macbeth- Curses! (Bard in the Withycombe Hall?)

I have never been a superstitious person, so in spite of Macbeth's reputation of being a "cursed" Shakespeare show to produce, I decided to fly in the face of tradition an make a conscious effort to revel in the unlucky. A cast of thirteen actors seemed a fitting start. I say the name "Macbeth" inside theatres, outside theatres, really whenever I feel it necessary (and sometimes unnecessary) to do so. In the past couple of weeks, however, I get the feeling there might be something to this shroud of ill-omen that seems to hang around the productions as the three "Weird Sisters" hang around graveyards.

Most directors know enough to expect the unexpected when working on productions. Typical problems arise no matter what precautions are taken. Actors get sick, emergencies happen, artistic choices don't work in the way first envisioned and need to be adapted. Things like this happen. These are rather ordinary surprises that occur from production to production.

Performances spaces, however, much to the surprise of the producing organization, being torn up and fenced off would count as an extraordinary surprise. Imagine our collective stress-levels rising when we encountered a playing space of sand and orange caution fencing. Our first week of rehearsals, therefore, has taken place indoors in the Main Stage. "Bard in the Main Stage" or "Bard in the Lab Theatre" don't seem to have the same ring to it.

At the moment, there is little to be done about the situation although than block the show, keep the actors focused on the work, and know that things will need to be adjusted on the blessed day when we can return to our space.

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