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Conjuring spirits on the beach – still from ‘The Craft’

Well folks, it looks like we’ll be saying that phrase a lot in the next few months, because next up for CityShakes is Macbeth. Er, The Scottish Play. Or Mackers, if you prefer. For those of you that don’t know, “Angels and ministers of grace defend us!” is the phrase that must be uttered in earnest to cleanse a space of the evil darkness conjured by Macbeth.

(Sidebar: if speaking the word “Macbeth” in a theater brings certain disaster to the space, does uttering the name on a theater company’s website wreak some kind of e-havoc? We sure hope not.)

I’m not sure how seriously I take all the theatrical superstition surrounding Macbeth, but I take very seriously all of the supernatural goings-on contained within the play. We at CityShakes are especially drawn to this text because of the way it deals sincerely with the concept of fate, and the courage with which it investigates the darkness within each of us. I know I speak for both Allison and myself when I say that we are hungry for this text. We are both eager to pull out the humanity and zest for life that is often overlooked when staging Macbeth. In doing so, we hope to begin to embrace the dark side of our own humanity. I’m sure this notion will sound very familiar to all you Butoh fans out there.

We are currently assembling a versatile, tight-knit ensemble of six artists who will collaborate to tell this story. Together, we will create a performance that will be more like a ritual, not unlike the seances so many of us staged in our youth (hence the production still from The Craft above). We’re planning our run for mid-October to mid-November (Happy Halloween!), and are in the final stages of space selection. Make sure you’re on our mailing list so you get all the updates!

But let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves. We’re not even finished with our summer show and we’re already diving into fall!? This weekend, CityShakes is on vacay, but next Saturday, the 29th, is our third performance of As You Like It. You have two more chances to come enjoy this lovely picnic in the park – don’t miss it!

– Brooke

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