This theatre production of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, which in 2019 netted the theatre company a theatre award in New York, is back on tour across South Devon in 2023-24.
Macbeth, one of Shakespeare’s most famous plays, is reimagined, with the original text performed set in a post-apocalyptic landscape of civil war, with action, drama, and stunning otherworldly witches.
Macbeth, a regional lord of Scotland and honoured general, is favoured by King Duncan after repelling an invasion; but, manipulated by his wife, and lured on by prophecies of power given by three witches, murders the king to take his place. The tale follows his descent into tyranny, continuing murders, and madness, as he consolidates his power. But as he tightens his grip, a rebellion by the other Scottish thanes, and Malcolm, the rightful heir to Duncan’s throne, builds to a final confrontation at Macbeths stronghold; Dunsinane castle.
The show is the original text, is suitable for all ages, and is touring across Devon; with the show at Exeter’s Barnfield Theatre already sold out, even before the company had shared posters or advertising for it. The public tour launches at Brixham Theatre on November 10th-11th, before travelling on to Exeter, Torquay, Kingskerswell, Stokenham, and Ashburton. In addition the company are performing and workshopping in local schools and social clubs, and are releasing a free online education pack via their website on November 1st.
In 2019, the Players toured this production across the Southwest, as well as streaming online, where it was seen in New York, and ultimately won a theatre award at a festival in Long Island, New York.
The actors and crew for Macbeth have worked together since August on this show, in and around their wider lives, jobs, studies, family commitments, etc; creating the costumes and props mostly from recycled materials; choreographing the action scenes, as well as working on the technical logistics for touring this show and all on a budget of selling second hand books and things on ebay, to fundraise. The South Devon Players has an age range of over 50 years between the youngest and the eldest, and proudly maintains an open door for all who want to get involved in building professional careers in theatre, in Torbay, regardless of past experience. Involvement in the shows is recognised by both Equity and Spotlight towards the professional registrations for our creatives.
Now, with a show in the final stages of rehearsals, the case and crew are beyond excited to bring this groundbreaking show to the public at last.
The show is female led; Laura Jury, who adapted the script from the original poems, has been an actor since 1996, and directing since 2000, she is also one of four theatre directors nationally on Equity’s Directors & Designers Committee, which meets regularly to discuss and advise on best practice and improving theatre working conditions on a national basis. Laura has an especial interest, born of experience, in championing regionally and rurally created theatre on a national scale.
Laura Jury breaks many stereotypes, as an autistic woman of colour in a professional leadership position, and several of the other creatives are also neurodivergent or from other marginalised demographics, proving themselves as capable and skilled as anyone else. .
The show – and theatre company – itself breaks down barriers for creatives. Laura also founded the South Devon Players, a not-for-profit theatre company based in Brixham, Torbay, in 2005 and led it to national and international arts awards for previous shows- the show creates opportunities for local Devon actors and creative talent of all backgrounds and experience levels to showcase their skills towards, or to further, developing a career in theatre and the arts