Shakespeare’s dark tale

St. Vincent de Paul High School drama students present ‘Macbeth’ May 11-14


Published: Thursday, May 5, 2011 at 3:00 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, May 5, 2011 at 11:38 a.m.


Terry Hankins       Click to enlarge

Mitchell Engelen plays the lead role in St. Vincent High School’s production of “Macbeth.”
What: St. Vincent de Paul High School drama students present William Shakespeare’s “Macbeth.”
When: 7 p.m. May 11-14
Where: In Tillman Hall on the St. Vincent de Paul High School campus, 849 Keokuk St.
Tickets: $5
Information: 763-1032, ext. 132.
William Shakespeare’s “Macbeth” is not as lighthearted and fun as some of his other works, but its dark, tense story is one that St. Vincent de Paul High School drama teacher Michael Barr has wanted his students to perform for quite some time.

“It’s always been one of my favorite Shakespeare plays and I have wanted to do a full-length production of it with my students,” said Barr. “I’ve done shortened versions of it before with younger actors at a camp, but never the full thing. The group of students I’m working with now is very serious about the piece and dedicated and committed to it. They really embraced the idea of doing this Shakespeare play.”

“Macbeth” is a tragedy about a regicide and its aftermath. It is Shakespeare’s shortest tragedy and is believed to have been written between 1603 and 1607. In the theater world, the play is believed to be cursed, so it’s common for its title to not be mentioned out loud, and is referred to simply as “the Scottish play.”

Though Shakespeare plays seem like standard fare for high school drama productions, Barr said that “Macbeth” is not one that’s done nearly as often as the tragedy, “Romeo and Juliet,” or many comedies such as “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”