A Post-Apocalyptic Scotland sets the stage for The Vagrancy’s MACBETH

Here’s one to arouse your primal instincts. Butoh-inspired choreography and gruesome stage combat will be the hallmarks of The Vagrancy’s upcoming production of Macbeth directed by artistic director Caitlin Hart. The production takes place in a post-apocalyptic Scotland and promises to be an unnerving and eerie fusion of classic and modern futility.

Hart will tell the story of Macbeth’s path of tyranny, murder and madness in an aggressive cut (show runs 100 minutes) which finds the temporary king haunted by the prophecies of three nightmarish witches and bolstered by his ambitious wife.

The cast stars Daniel Kaemon as Macbeth and Alana Dietze as Lady Macbeth, with Arthur Keng (Banquo), Joseph Valdez (Macduff), Elitia Daniels (Lady Macduff), My-Ishia Cason-Brown (Ross), Brandon Ruiter (Malcolm), Kamar Elliot (Lennox), Marissa Brennan (First Witch/Hecate), Kelly Perez (Second Witch), Carolyn Deskin (Third Witch), Ann Colby-Stocking (Queen Duncan/First Apparition), Steve Madar (Porter/Doctor), Austin Iredale (Siward/First Murderer), Blaine Nicholls (Captain), Andrew Walke (Angus), Ciera Jo Thompson (Donalbain/ Caithness), Rebecca Everhart (Witch/Messenger), Maia Kazin (Witch/ Gentlewoman), Meredith Brown (Witch/Nurse), Aliyah Conley and Mia Moore doubling as Macduff’s Child, and Andrew Grigorian (Fleance).

Dance choreography is by Holly Rothschild and fight choreography is by Jason Vaughn. The creative team also includes Tristan Jeffers (set design), Kaitlyn Kaufman (costume design), Matt Richter (lighting & sound design), Gabriela Zarate (props design), Steve Madar (technical director), Amanda A. Padró (dramaturg), Kathryn Read Fisher (associate producing director), Karina Faulstich (assistant director), Miranda Stewart and Jamie Hannah Drutman (co-producers), Kelly Egan (stage manager) and Karina Wolfe (public relations).

The Vagrancy - MacbethThe Vagrancy is an LA-based theatre company that creates visceral work in order to touch the human spirit.


October 28 – November 20, 2016
The Vagrancy at
The Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles
1238 West 1st Street
Los Angeles, CA 90026
Friday/Saturday at 8pm, Sunday at 7pm
Tickets: TheVagrancy.brownpapertickets
Running time: 100 minutes
For more about the company go to www.thevagrancy.com.


LA Opera Mounts a New MACBETH Starring Plácido Domingo

Macbeth - LA Opera

Placido Domingo as Macbeth with Ekaterina Semenchuk as Lady Macbeth and Roberto Tagliavini as Banquo. Photo by Karen Almond

Plácido Domingo stars in the title role of Verdi’s Macbeth, opening September 17 downtown at the Music Center, with Ekaterina Semenchuk joining him as Lady Macbeth. The brand new LA Opera production is directed by Darko Tresnjak, Tony Award-winning director of A Gentlemen’s Guide to Love & Murder, who previously directed The Ghosts of Versailles for LA Opera in 2015. Macbeth is conducted by LA Opera’s Music Director, James Conlon.

Of the opera, Conlon says: “Compared to Otello and Falstaff—Verdi’s late-career masterpieces, similarly drawn from Shakespeare—his Macbeth seems less consequential. But that is only because we judge it by the measure of a standard set by the composer himself. Viewed in comparison with the composer’s contemporaries, and with many of his owns works of the period, it looms large. Had Verdi died or ceased to compose after Macbeth, it would stand today as a towering work of the Italian repertoire.”

He goes on to explain. “[There is] one major innovation that exemplifies the radical nature of his vision: Macbeth is a loveless opera, ‘un opera senza amore.’ George Bernard Shaw’s adage that ‘Italian Romantic operas are about a tenor and a soprano who want to make love, and a baritone who won’t let them’ is utterly unseated. No compromise was to be made to the expectations of the public to provide a stereotypic cast of characters in each vocal category. There is, in fact, no antagonist. The only desire expressed in this opera is the desire for power. There is no battle of equals, only an inner conflict with arrogance and insatiable ambition, and the corrupting lust for power. It has also been observed that Verdi’s opera is a tragedy for the royal couple, but a comedy for the witches.”

LA Opera - Macbeth

Fight director Steve Rankin in rehearsal choreographing a pack of sword-wielding witch-dancers. Photo by Karen Almond

LA Opera - Macbeth

A video crew will shoot one of the king’s heads and the green color of the backdrop, and on dancer Jean Michelle Sayeg’s legs, will be ‘dropped out’ digitally to create a supernatural floating head effect. Photo by Larry Ho

LA Opera - Macbeth

Singers rehearse with James Conlon before moving to the stage for dress and tech rehearsals. Photo by Larry Ho

Click here for more behind-the-scenes photos of LA Opera’s new production.


September 17 – October 16, 2016
Dorothy Chandler Pavilion
135 North Grand Avenue
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Tickets and info: www.laopera.org

Photo Flash: MACBETH, opening tonight at The Old Globe

Macbeth, directed by Brian Kulick and starring Jonathan Cake as Macbeth and Marsha Stephanie Blake as Lady Macbeth, now through July 24th at The Old Globe in San Diego. www.theoldglobe.org. Click HERE for more photos of the production.

Jonathan Cake as Macbeth and Marsha Stephanie Blake stars as Lady Macbeth in William Shakespeare's Macbeth, directed by Brian Kulick, running June 19 - July 24, 2016 at The Old Globe. Photo by Jim Cox.

Jonathan Cake and Marsha Stephanie Blake. All photos by Jim Cox.

(foreground from left) Timothy D. Stickney as Banquo and Jonathan Cake as Macbeth with the cast of William Shakespeare's Macbeth, directed by Brian Kulick, running June 19 - July 24, 2016 at The Old Globe. Photo by Jim Cox.

(foreground from left) Timothy D. Stickney as Banquo and Jonathan Cake as Macbeth with the cast of Macbeth.

Marsha Stephanie Blake stars as Lady Macbeth and Jonathan Cake as the title role of William Shakespeare's Macbeth, directed by Brian Kulick, running June 19 - July 24, 2016 at The Old Globe. Photo by Jim Cox.

Marsha Stephanie Blake and Jonathan Cake

Marsha Stephanie Blake stars as Lady Macbeth and Jonathan Cake as the title role of William Shakespeare's Macbeth, directed by Brian Kulick, running June 19 - July 24, 2016 at The Old Globe. Photo by Jim Cox.

Marsha Stephanie Blake and Jonathan Cake

MacDeth! Raises Money for Pulse Victims with Friday Performance

Ryan J-W Smith - MacDeth

Award-winning British poet and playwright, Ryan J-W Smith, artistic director of Rogue Shakespeare®, has announced that 100% of the box office of this Friday’s performance of his new verse comedy, MacDeth!, will be donated to the GoFundMe campaign Support Victims of Pulse Shooting.

“Every available ticket has been made ‘Pay What You Can’ – with a suggested donation of $100,” says Smith. “I do not want to politicize what we are doing – we just want to do something to help the victims of this horrific attack. Let’s sell-out Friday night, please give what you can to support those in need, and hopefully this will encourage other shows to do the same. We all live in luxury here, we can all afford to donate a little cash – and at least one night’s work.”

MacDeth! is currently playing at the Ruby Theatre on Hollywood. Friday’s performance starts at 10pm. For tickets and more information, visit http://hff16.org/3680.

Brian Kulick to Direct MACBETH at The Old Globe

Marsha Stephanie Blake and Jonathan Cake. Photo by Jim Cox.

Marsha Stephanie Blake and Jonathan Cake. Photo by Jim Cox.

Brian Kulick, Artistic Director of Classic Stage Company and a leading Shakespearean expert, will direct the “Scottish Play” for The Old Globe in San Diego, which runs June 19 – July 24 in the Globe’s outdoor Lowell Davies Festival Theatre.

Tempted by an evil prophecy and encouraged by his wife ever deeper into his own dark ambition, Macbeth murders his way to the throne of Scotland. Shakespeare’s chilling tragedy is filled with ferocious battles, supernatural horrors, famously gorgeous poetry, and some of the Bard’s most vivid characters. A stellar cast, under Kulick’s directions, will electrify the San Diego night in Shakespeare’s classic masterpiece.

In the title role is Jonathan Cake (Cymbeline, Medea, and The Philanthropist on Broadway) with Marsha Stephanie Blake (Orange is the New Black, Broadway’s The Merchant of Venice) as Lady Macbeth. The cast also includes Jerome Preston Bates as Duncan; Clifton Duncan as Macduff; Brian Keane as Ross and 3rd Murderer; John Lavelle as Porter and 1st Murderer; James Joseph O’Neil as Lennox, 2nd Murderer, and Seyton; Mark Pinter as Old Man and Siward; and Timothy D. Stickney as Banquo.

Joining them are actors from The Old Globe and Univ. of San Diego Shiley Graduate Theatre Program, including Amara James Aja as Bloody Captain and Menteith; Amy Blackman as 2nd Witch; Ally Carey as Lady Macduff; Ajinkya Desai as Fleance; Talley Beth Gale as Gentlewoman; Kevin Hafso-Koppman as Donalbain; Lorenzo Landini as Young Siward; Jake Millgard as Angus; Makha Mthembu as 1st Witch; Christina A. Okolo as Ensemble; Suzelle Palacios as 3rd Witch; Daniel Petzold as Malcolm; and Nathan Whitmer as Doctor.

“I’m excited that Macbeth is kicking off our Festival in this year of Shakespeare celebrations,” said Erna Finci Viterbi Artistic Director Barry Edelstein. “It’s one of my very favorite Shakespeare plays and one of the Bard’s most thrilling plays to watch: suspenseful, epic, and beautiful all at the same time. Brian Kulick possesses one of the great minds in the American theatre, and his production is going to be a memorable one, especially in the hands of this hugely talented company, led by Jonathan Cake and Marsha Stephanie Blake, two actors of striking intensity.”

Additional free events taking place during the run of Macbeth include:

INSIGHTS SEMINAR: Tues, June 21 at 6:30 pm, featuring a panel selected from the artistic company of the current show, preceded by a reception at 6:00 pm.

POST-SHOW FORUMS: Tues, June 28 & July 5, and Wed, June 29, where you may discuss the play with members of the cast and crew following the performance.

SHAKESPEARE IN THE GARDEN: Tues, June 28; Wed, June 29; Thurs, June 30; Fri, July 1; Sat, July 2; all at 7:00 pm. This is a series of informal presentations in the Craig Noel Garden that enhance the theatre-going experience.

Following Macbeth, the Summer Shakespeare Festival will conclude with Love’s Labor’s Lost, directed by three-time Tony Award winner Kathleen Marshall, Aug 14 – Sept 18.

Also, from June 4 to July 7, the Globe, in partnership with the San Diego Public Library, will be the California host for First Folio! The Book that Gave Us Shakespeare, on tour from the Folger Shakespeare Library, one of the world’s most treasured books. Published in 1623, this famous volume is the first collected edition of Shakespeare’s 36 plays, half of which would have been lost if not for its publication.

The Folger Shakespeare Library, in partnership with Cincinnati Museum Center and the American Library Association, is touring a First Folio across the nation, visiting one location in each of the 50 states, Washington, DC, and Puerto Rico. The volume will be on view in the Art Gallery at the San Diego Central Library @ Joan Λ Irwin Jacobs Common. During the entire month, the Globe, the Library, and their project partners will offer numerous public programs for adults and families before, during, and after the tour visits San Diego. For more information visit First Folio San Diego 2016.

June 19 – July 24, 2016 (Opening night June 25 at 8pm)
The Old Globe
1363 Old Globe Way in Balboa Park
San Diego, CA
Tickets: (619) 234-5623 or www.TheOldGlobe.org

2016 Ojai Summer Shakespeare Festival Presents Merry Wives and Macbeth

Ojai Shakes

Peachtree Theater Company will present two productions during its 2016 Ojai Summer Shakespeare Festival in Libbey Bowl, July 21 – 31. Allan Hunt, from the Thousand Oaks Repertory Company, will direct Merry Wives of Windsor, produced by Peachtree’s founding director, Demitri Corbin, while Corbin directs A Midsummer Night’s Dream.

Peachtree Theater Company is a not-for-profit organization that brings arts education to at-risk youth in underserved communities. Through community partnerships, Peachtree provides visual, performing, and digital media arts to school districts in the Ojai Valley. The company also pairs youth with veteran artists in full theater productions as part of its Peachtree Professional program. Past productions include, A Dragon Awaits at Ojai Arts Center Theater, The Oblong Man at Zalk Theater, and Love’s Labours Lost, a co-production with Ojai Shakespeare Festival and Ojai Arts Center Theater. With this festival season, Peachtree inaugurates its first Shakespeare internship program.

Also part of the festival is a screening of Shakespeare in Love on July 21 at 7pm.

Shakespeare In Love: July 21 (7pm)
Merry Wives of Windsor: July 22, 28 & 30 (7:30 pm) and July 24 (3pm)
A Midsummer Night’s Dream: July 23 & 29 (7:30 pm), July 31 (3pm)
Peachtree Theatre Company at Libbey Bowl
210 S. Signal Street, Ojai, CA 93023
For more information call 805-272-5018, or visit www.peachtreetheatercompany.com

Innocent Sleep, CityShakes’ Adaptation of Macbeth Featured at IFS Film Festival

This year’s Independent Filmmakers Showcase will include an adaptation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, produced by Santa Monica-based City Shakespeare Company. The screening will take place at Laemmle Music Hall in Beverly Hills on June 1 at 8:10 pm.

Innocent Sleep began as a site-specific theatre production staged in a Santa Monica warehouse in the Fall of 2013. Following its initial run, CityShakes artistic directors Allison Volk and Brooke Bishop decided to continue exploring the intimacy between Shakespeare’s characters and the viewer via film.

Says Volk, who wrote Innocent Sleep, “The film focuses in on Acts I and II of the source text, exploring the emotional dark corners of the night the King is murdered.” In a revolutionary hybrid approach, the script marries bits of Shakespeare’s original text with contemporary dialogue. Bishop calls the film “a piece of feminist speculative fiction that puts the audience in the shoes of Lady Macbeth, and asks the viewer how far they would go to have it all.”

Innocent SleepInnocent Sleep stars Gregory Linington, Leslie O’Carroll, Allison Volk, Colin Martin, David Hartstone, Caylie Rae Kalmbach, Jason Coviello, Leslie O’Carroll, Mallory Marie Wedding, Jordan Leigh, Jennifer DeDominici, Jennifer Lynne Jorgenson, Olivia Hendrick, Kristin Keating, and Mindy Faulkner.

June 1, 2016 at 8:10 pm
Laemmle Musical Hall
9036 Wilshire Blvd
Beverly Hills, CA 90211
Ticket Link 
The film is also available for pre-order on Vimeo On Demand.
More info: www.InnocentSleep.com

Los Angeles Drama Club Invites Students into The World of Shakespeare

LA Drama Club world of shakespeare

Students are invited to join Los Angeles Drama Club this fall to study the foundation of the club’s classic Improv classes with characters, stories, and language of William Shakespeare.
In these after school classes (Sept 30 – Nov 18), students will explore Shakespeare’s classic tragedy, Macbeth, and create an original piece telling the story through movement and Shakespeare’s test.

The Los Angeles Drama Club has successfully built an ongoing artistic community of children and youth who, through the creative process of “putting on a play” have found a passion, a purpose, and a safe place to express themselves and gain self-worth from their collective accomplishments. Class participants tell stories, decode the language, improvise, role play, and rehearse. All this culminates in a public performance on November 22. Through these practices, the students organically develop a personal relationship with the play and its characters while building literacy, communication skills, self-esteem and a strong community spirit.

September 30 – November 18, 2015 (Classes)
Wednesdays (4:00 – 5:30 pm)
Sunday, November 22, 2015 (Performance)
Fais Do Do – 5253 W. Adams Blvd
Pay-what-you-can (suggested donation – $100.00)
Click Here for more information and to register.

First Look: Michael Fassbender & Marion Cotillard in Macbeth

Colonials presents Macbeth at Miles Memorial Playhouse

Colonials presents Shakespeare’s dark tragedy Macbeth at the Miles Memorial Playhouse, 1130 Lincoln Blvd, Santa Monica. Call (310) 804-6745 for reservations. For more information go to www.theatreforasmallspace.com.

Colonials Macbeth

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