Don’t have a traditional theatre on hand? More and more groups seem to be saying “that’s alright, we’ll make do” and seeking out alternative theatre spaces. And I have to say, I love this trend. A production of The Tempest staged steps away from the ocean, Halloween-themed shows performed in a cemetery, even promenade plays that invite audiences to walk along the streets of a town and experience a theatrical event in an incredibly immersive fashion. A notable example is the NYC production, Sleep No More, which took a few abandoned warehouses and created “the McKintrick Hotel,” a 1930s setting for a multi-story recreation of MacBeth. Audience members don masks and follow the action of not only the Shakespeare original, but also what precedes and follows the story of Mac as we know it.
An immaculate amount of detail, room after room of embellishments and the result? A macabre and innovative manner of storytelling that invites the audience to be a part of its unsettling nature.
Images by Sara Krulwich
is this still playing? would love to don a mask
i am going to see FESTEN next week.
Looks like it’s playing until the end of June. Please go check it out! And FESTEN looks incredible. Let me know what you think of it.
Alternative theater spaces are what make the theater alive in this age. I adore shows set in real spaces with real intimacy. This is great stuff!
Couldn’t agree more. I love the intimacy and creativity that are required for these types of shows.
Nothing like performance art to bring out the worst in writers…
Critics have agreed that if you’re looking for a traditional version of Sleep No More, you won’t be getting the best version of Shakespeare’s words. But that’s why I find the work so intriguing. When a piece is that old, and gone through countless remountings, it would be difficult to stand out. And yet this group has found a way to breathe new life into the work. I think that’s a good sign for the future of theatre.
I haven’t heard of this before, what a great idea. 🙂
It’s an incredible idea. The creator of this show is known for his out-of-the-box re-envisionings of Shakespeare works.
This is amazing!!!!
I so agree. Makes you want to pick up a mask and find your way around the world they’ve created.
Love the info you share! Love this show concept. It’s like site specific to the next level!
Thanks Jonathan. And exactly. They’ve taken MacBeth to an entirely new plane.
I heard about this show from a friend of mine who actually helped with the set build for this show! It sounds amazing 😀
Fantastic that your friend got to assist! A tedious but incredibly rewarding job I’m sure.
Great post! I’ve been doing “House Theatre” for the past year: taking solo-performance pieces and doing them in people’s houses. It’s been a wild ride, to be sure. But people are hungry for this kind of intimate theatre. Moving to CA in a few months to be in warmer houses…
Fantastic! And you’re right that the intimate experience is definitely one that people crave. If you end up in LA be sure to say hello!
I used to live in Hollywood in 2001-3, but most likely am heading further south.