Macbeth - September 27 - October 01, 2018

Richardson High School Theatre

 End Notes 



Well, then.


This is the first fall production I've directed since this school last did Macbeth. About 13 (nice number, right?) years ago, director Jessica Carey wo(manned) a production of Macbeth, and I directed an original piece called Clownbeth. I always thought that so many people were traumatized by clowns when they were kids, it would be interesting to see a Shakespearean tragedy with a circus theme. Well, the end result was a farce, and a pretty fun one at that. We did those two shows in rep over a two week period and had an absolute blast.


Why did I want to have another Macbeth? The truth is that it was a political reason. While I truly believe in a separation of political ideology and teaching students, the state of our union seems so fragmented that it's difficult to avoid commenting on it. Throughout history, men and women have found their ways into leadership by gaining the trust of their constituents, buying trust, threatening, cajoling, promising, lying...for every great honorable leader in history, there has been a murderous tyrant. In many cases, our great leaders have had hidden agendas and secrets that would have cost them their positions in today's age of instant media and social networking.


The question is--what forces can take an honorable man, or in our case, woman, and turn her into a murderer? What prize is worth killing not only your leaders but your friends, wives, husbands, and children? Back in Macbeth's time, regicide was more common, but today, people are constantly "killed" through social media and the like. The movies would have us believe that even more sinister things happen that we don't know about. Ultimately, we can only pray that our leaders are in positions of power for good reasons, because they truly wish to represent we, the people. As we approach a very powerful vote, it's important to remember that visiting the polls, no matter how you vote, is one of the few things left that can make a difference at the top.


My final note is about the casting of our show. When I first announced that we were doing a gender switch, many of the students (and teachers, actually) thought that we were just having the girls play guys and guys play girls, but that's not quite what I was going for. I wanted to see an entire society switched. A world that developed around the idea that the women went to war, hunted, and gathered, while the men stayed home to tend the house. Would things be different in a female-run society, or would many of the same mistakes be made? As you watch Lady Macbeth as she decides to disembark from her bloody journey, do you have hope for Queen Duncan? Or do you see the machinations of her husband, Macbeth, as he tells her to "screw your courage to the sticking place," to stay the bloody course they have designed. I think that what I'm trying to say is that evil can take almost any form, male or female. It's character that underlies honest leadership. Of course, Queen Duncan seems like a leader filled with character, and look what happens to her. Yeesh!


Anyway, thanks for coming! We hope you enjoy our show. VOTE!

Page 22 of 22