What would William Shakespeare say if he saw one of his profound tragedies turned into some hip-hop carnival? He would definitely see his Macbeth in a new light and probably give props to the imaginative and funky interpretation. Kelly Boczek-Petrie wrote the story, along with its infectious lyrics, and directed this re-mastered Shakespearian classic. Tomás Quiroz (Flee) warms up the audience and at wells them what to expect as the three Weird Sisters, or Witches, play an intense card game. Angus (R. Benito Cardenas) one of the noblemen bursts onto the stage speaking Spanglish and talks about Macbeth, or McBeezy, as he is known in close circles. R-Thane (Khalipa Oldjohn) affectionately calls the future King of Scotland Dunca-Dunc. Everyone has a cell and has a chance to spit some game onto the mic.
The witches (Barika Croom, Cai Handley and Elisa Richardson) immediately plan their next caper involving Macbeth. These fly-looking sorceresses in their bustier, tulle skirt and strategically ripped stockings, inform Macbeth (Tony Williams) will be King of Scotland and Banquo aka bq (Arif Kinchen), though he will not be king, will he will father a line of kings. The witches leave, but are always nearby to manipulate the situation, as the two men discuss their future. Macbeth sends a text to his wife Lady M (Michelle Merring) who makes a promise to aid her husband to conquer the throne.
Macbeezy waffles on murdering Duncan (Vance Roi Reyes) the king and his children Malcolm (René Guerrero) and Donalbainia (Julia Morizawa) when they travel to Macbeth for dinner and staying the night. Macbeezy has nothing against the king and waffles at the mere utterance they must all be cleared. Luckily, Lady M doesn’t’ have a problem with it. In order for Macbeth to be king, Duncan must be dead. His children are collateral damage.
Boczek-Petrie stays close to the original text but spices things up for a fresh look. Alongside the rapping, there’s a tango sequence along with some back-in-the-day pop locking. McBeezy and Mac Duff, bka Mackie D (Stuart Calof) shoot each with quick and hilarious one liners. On the real tip, it’s the women who rule this play. Lady M and the Witches control what happens and what will lie ahead.
Not sure what the Bard would say his mystical play Macbeth, oops, my bad, Macbeezy into a hip hopera, reminiscent of the 1980s break dance movies. I like to think he would lean back on his chair, hands behind his head and say, “It’s all good.”
McBeezy runs Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m., and Sundays at 5p.m. until Sunday, November 21 plays at The Knightsbridge Theatre located at1944 Riverside Drive, in Los Angeles. For ticket information call (323) 667-0955 or reserve online at www.knightsbridgetheatre.com