Friday, June 29, 2018

The Scottish Play, Bard on the Beach

MacBeth became known as the ‘scottish play’ because of a superstition saying it’s name would bring supernatural disruptions to the play.  Seeing  the performance by the three witches in tonight’s show, I’m not taking any chances in the title.

 Laura and I loved the play thoroughly. With the royal Bard on the Beach tents  in Vanier Park on Granville Island and sailboats going by in the False Creek back ground beyond the stage  I felt I was seeing Shakespeare as it would have been first seen hundreds of years ago.

Director Chris Abraham did a marvellous job of directing with great timing as  cast flowed in from aisles and tunnels, and voices rang out from around the theatre.  So much action with sword fights and kettle drums, I felt a child again, simply enthralled in the amazing drama.  

I really must repeat I loved the witches, Emma Slipp, Kate Besworth, and Harveen Sandhu. ‘ Eye of neut and toe of frog’ the famous incantation of the witches brew.  Ah to  hear again the  words, ‘Double, double, toil and trouble.’  I was in England. I was reading MacBeth by pen light in a tent as a boy.

With other Shakespeare plays I’m sometimes struggling with the language. Not with MacBeath.  So many lines are apart of our history.  It was good to see my church friend Rod in the antitheatre with his teacher friend. Rod had played in MacBeath as a boy and his friend had taught MacBeth many times. The two were finishing each other’s refrains thoroughly enjoying themselves.  

 Lady MacBeth, played so powerfully by Moya O Connell, sent shivers up my spine when she cried, ‘Out Out Damn Spot!’  I really did enjoy the discussion of psychiatry by the doctor, played by Scott Bellis,  and MacBeth.  

 I loved best Andrew Wheeler as MacDuff.  Of Course Ben Carlson as MacBeth was incredible. What a voice. What delivery. What a play. All the actors and actresses are to be congratulated and were with a standing ovation and lingering applause.  

The sword fights were best too, after the witches.  They really did a fine job. It’s not often one sees a great staged sword fight today but this was it.  I was thankful to have been there.  

Bard on the Beach delivers. Shakespeare performances continue June to September , 2018. 

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