The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Thursday, Macbeth, Renfaire

Abstracts from Shakespeare
By Desmond Graham

In fact Macbeth
listened to his wife
then killed her
placed her in bed
beside dead Duncan
told the court
he caught tham at it
killed them both:
thus he gained
the crown, a reputation
as a man of principle
and died, old,
in bed.


Wednesday ran away from me and I don't know where it went -- the weather was gorgeous, I took a long walk in the woods, and I got some chores done and had interesting conversations with Daniel and Adam when they got home from school about various issues in the news from gay teen suicides to the upcoming election. Paul made lentils with chick peas and couscous for dinner, which was awesome with raisins and canned peaches, then we all watched Undercovers, which remains pretty fluffy but entirely enjoyable -- I love that all the men on the show say things like, "I was the star quarterback. I used to sleep with all the cheerleaders and the occasional mascot."

Then those of us who did not have homework watched the Patrick Stewart Macbeth on PBS. It was extraordinary -- I often think that plays filmed for TV lose something in the translation, but this is perhaps the most gripping production of the play I've seen, and I've seen it at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival, the American Shakespeare Center, the Chicago Shakespeare Theater, and a touring production by the RSC as well as various film productions. The Soviet state imagery is very effective, the witch-nurses are incredibly creepy, and the production is really well directed for TV, with elevators descending to hell and Banquo's murder taking place on a moving train -- even knowing what's going to happen, the fact that there are other passengers makes it really scary. There's also a wonderful sequence where Macbeth dresses and his table is set while meanwhile his enemies are "disappeared" in basements and filthy dark corridors. Great use of music and sound, great lighting...great show.

The acrobats of Barely Balanced juggled knives while balanced on each other in their early show at the Boarshead Inn...

...and juggled fire at the later show at the Globe Theatre.

Also at the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire, Don Juan threatened to burst Miguel's bladders, even while blindfolded...

...and the two dueled with flaming swords.

Sir Walter Raleigh, Sir Francis Drake, and a peasant admired some of the street performers.

dementordelta and I admired the harvest fruits on display around the Shire of Mount Hope.

We also admired the vases and goblets at the glassblowing building.

But by evening, the sunset stole the show.

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