“Macbeth” Performance Marvels Junior Class

Kathryn Russo

The junior class experienced a wonderful rendition of one of  William Shakespeare’s many plays, Macbeth, on April 27, 2010. The play was abridged to an hour and many scenes were cut out; however, the actors still captured the essence of the themes, motifs, and symbolism that run throughout Macbeth. Macbeth is a common thread throughout the junior English curriculum; therefore, every junior in the auditorium could relate to the story that envelopes Macbeth’s character and his odd personality. The main character, Macbeth, with the help of his wife, Lady Macbeth, murders king Duncan as well as his friend Banquo so he can obtain power in Ireland.
The greater Boston area acting troupe, which is composed of six people, is based in Boston and is currently putting on three of Shakespeares plays: MacbethA Midsummer Night’s Dream, and Romeo and Juliet. Normally, the troupe reherses for about three weeks prior to the production in order to memorize their lines, set up staging and blocking, and make sure their costumes fit.
Although the troupe does bring the magic of Shakespeare to audiences all around the Boston area there is one thing that the actors do not bring: props. Bringing props in a hassle to the troupe because it significantly increases setting up time and the props are hard to travel from place to place with. Mainly, the troupe relies on their acting skills to carry them through the show. The complex fighting scenes seemed completely improvised, and the monologues were filled with feeling, enthusiam, and emotion. The actors also memorized multiple characters parts; the actor who played Macbeth also played Banquo. Macbeth’s dagger speech was filled with passion and Lady Macbeth encompassed the personality of a devious planner.  However, the play was not close to a Broadway production by any means, but the actors got the main points of the play across, and the students were able to experience a dose of theatre. Since not many students regularly have the opportunity to see a play, this Macbeth was a unique, worthwhile experience for the students.
After the play concluded the students had the opportunity to ask the actors questions about their life, background, and plays they have participated in. One daring student even asked what the actors’ most embarrassing moment was on stage. Another student asked what schools the actors went to; two of the actors went to Boston University for their bachelor of Fine Arts degree while the other three attended Brandeis University. Each actor had their own story to tell in terms of experiences they have had throughout their acting careers. One of the actors loves to participate in musicals, while another actor enjoys plays with more action and on stage violence. Some of the embarrassing moments that the actors encountered were wardrobe malfunctions and a high heel getting stuck in scaffolding.  Each actor had their own story to tell and the students seemed genuinely interested in what they had to say.
Although the students missed class time Macbeth was a success because the junior class learned to appreciate acting, theatre, as well as one of Shakespeare’s masterpieces.