AP NEWS

Highland Actors Guild ‘Macbeth’

May 18, 2019

The Highland Actors Guild opened their final show for their 2018-2019 season, William Shakespeare’s “Macbeth.” “Macbeth” has an interesting history within the theatrical world. Many people believe it is cursed. Some people refer to “Macbeth” as “The Scottish Play,” “The Unmentionable” and “THAT play.” A lot of people hate Shakespeare, but it is incredible to see a group of high school students taking a chance and putting on a Shakespearian production.

The bad luck has been written since it’s inception. Opening night, during 1606, the young man who played Lady Macbeth died backstage. There have been incidents of stages being burned down during production. In 1934, four actors played Macbeth within the course of a week! Not to mention change of directors, postponing opening night and the death of common patrons. Some people believe Shakespeare used a spell in the recitation of the Weird Sisters. Even though the slew of unfortunate incidents has followed in its wake, “Macbeth” continues to bring in the crowds.

The stage was simple but had a great design. The backdrop looked like a stone wall in a castle. There were different places the characters could play. In one corner there was a large boulder, which the characters could play around. The stage allowed for numerous scenes and allowed for a focus to placed solely on the actors. The costumes were great as well! They were appropriate for the time period and had a mix of colors, which worked well for partially black curtained stage.

The cast did a marvelous job for such a difficult production. The Weird Sisters were played by Katie Johnson, Alex Pratt and Abby Record. Macbeth was played by Kyle Bascom. His work was exceptional, especially with the extent of his lines. Lady Macbeth was played by Madison May. Her facial expressions were great, from a power-hungry wife to someone who was losing her mind. She had a good chemistry with Macbeth. Duncan was played by Jonah Brown. Malcom was played by Tristan Pinkerton. Banquo was played by Luke Bedell. Macduff was played by Trenton Brown. The rest of the cast did a marvelous job as well. This is a tough production, and this cast pulled it together.

The director of this production was Ted Bonman, who is also the dramatic teacher for Highland High School. As a teacher, he has pulled off an incredible feat. I know many high school directors who won’t touch Shakespeare because of its difficulty. Bonman has created a place where the language of Shakespeare is not as scary as one might think. The students all have a hand in bringing together the production, including costumes, painting and properties. Bravo everyone!

Even though this production only ran for three days, one must commend Highland High School’s Actors Guild for their tenacity in bringing “The Scottish Play” to life. Everyone did a marvelous job and should be proud of their accomplishments. I am excited to see what is to come this fall when the students are back in session. Well done!

Emily Thornton is currently working on her Master’s in Communication at ISU. She enjoys writing, racing after her son and playing games with her husband.