Spoken Too Soon!


You would think that by now I’d have more sense than to tempt the little weather gods by predicting a fine last 4 days for the Festival.  As I write, one hour before the start of Macbeth, some very welcome heavy showers are playing havoc no doubt with the queue of theatregoers waiting to enter the arena.  Whilst “clearing” is a word I’d like to associate with these little cloud bursts, I have a feeling they’re going to affect the show, and undoubtedly turn away the potential walk-up trade--perhaps even cause a cancellation.  Gloom descends.
3 hours later, and I’ve left an arena of over 700 fabulous theatre goers, who came and stayed.  It’s interval as I write.  The rain scared some away, but I’m hoping they’ll return tomorrow or Saturday.  I do love our supporters; they did this last year when the weather threatened us, and damp or otherwise, they stayed on with enthusiasm.  The sky is full of stars, some cloud, and a moon that’s starting to lose its top, but all’s well in the weather department.  There wasn’t a breeze to rustle the leaves tonight, so unlike Saturday, where the wind whipped up the white noise that troubled some patrons; tonight, there’s perfect sound.  
So after all that anxiety, the city got a welcome rain shower, the company a performance, and the audience a show.  There is some concern that the damp stage won’t give Macbeth and Macduff the right traction in their fights.  This is where the drilling, precision of choreography and complicité between the actors will pay off as they negotiate a difficult, and potentially dangerous encounter.  In the theatre we say “Break a leg!” when we mean “good luck.”  In these circumstances, it’s too close to reality to serve as a good wish.
Later Still
Another prophetic note!  The damp stage was like glass and a better subtitle for the night might have been “Macbeth On Ice.”  The final scenes were played barefoot to avoid accidents.  What a business this is!