On Social Media: Macbeth

This summer, I have had the great good fortune to contribute to Ian Doescher‘s community reading initiative, the Shakespeare 2020 Project. A website and Facebook group support members of the public with free editions and resources as they read through the complete works over the course of the year. In August, I offered the second of two informal video introductions for Macbeth, available via YouTube.

As a bonus, I seemed to time things correctly that you can watch the sun set and room darken behind me over the course of the video – just as the world gradually darkens in the play! Read the full transcript below.

Continue reading “On Social Media: Macbeth”

Shakespeare, Surprise, & Other Drugs

And in the wood, where often you and I
Upon faint primrose-beds were wont to lie,
Emptying our bosoms of their counsel sweet,
There my Lysander and myself shall meet
— Hermia, A Midsummer Night’s Dream 1.1

Walking into the Armory Theatre last night, home of Portland Center Stage, everything except for the play was unknown. I had not yet seen an Anonymous Theatre Company production, which in earlier years was by special invite. A regular fixture in the Portland theatre calendar, their one-night-a-year productions advertise only the director(s) and the play title, A Midsummer Night’s Dream. The cast isn’t known to us, or even to one another. Last night, the night of the show, was the first they saw the stage, said these words in public, formed these relationships within the world of the play. The actors were come in amongst us, having taken their seats in the audience to wait out their cue—one even so long as act five. In a play about unexpected transformations, the added level of secrecy and coordinated reveals left me wondering to what extent I rely on the affect of surprise to buoy me through a theatrical experience.

Titania (Joellen Sweeney) falls in love with an ass, Bottom (Jessica Tidd).

Continue reading “Shakespeare, Surprise, & Other Drugs”