My production of MACBETH had a terrific run at Santa Cruz Shakespeare in the beautiful outdoor Festival Glen Stage. The “curse” hit us in the most unbelievable way. On our last preview, as the show was starting, the sky turned a strange shade of red. The first witches scene went off as normal and there was a sound of thunder – the witches vowed to meet in “thunder, lightening or in rain”. I turned around to my sound designer, who was sitting behind me – that sounded like the wrong cue to me. The “bloody captain” scene continued, and again another thunder cue in the wrong place. At this point we started to look up. The witches entered for the third scene (the one where they are supposed to me in thunder, lighting or rain) and a downpour starts. The audience grabs their coats and puts them over their heads. No one leaves their seats.
Macbeth enters with Banquo. Rain, thunder and now lightening fill the Glen. It’s quite amazing. Before Steve Pickering, as Macbeth, says his first line, the Stage Manager calls “hold” over the PA. An audience member yells something, and Steve comes downstage and says, “so foul and fair a day I have not seen”. Huge applause. Rain continues to come down. It is decided to cancel the rest of the performance for safety reasons.
Since it was the last night to look at light cues, a handful of us stayed to walk thru a few scenes that needed some attention. Around the time the witches would have made their third entrance (aka the apparition scene), if we had continued the performance, all the power went out. So I guess it was good we stopped.
It was quite an exciting evening.