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Home :: Archive :: 2007 :: September ::
Macbeth Curse
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 18.0626  Thursday, 20 September 2007

[1] 	From: 		Margaret Hargrave <
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	Date: 		Wednesday, 19 Sep 2007 23:04:37 +1000
	Subj: 		Re: SHK 18.0621 Macbeth Curse

[2] 	From: 		Carol Morley <
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	Date: 		Thursday, 20 Sep 2007 12:15:44 +0000
	Subj: 		RE: SHK 18.0621 Macbeth Curse

[3] 	From: 		Susan St. John <
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	Date: 		Thursday, 20 Sep 2007 06:41:38 -0700
	Subj: 		Re: SHK 18.0621 Macbeth Curse


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Margaret Hargrave <
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Date: 		Wednesday, 19 Sep 2007 23:04:37 +1000
Subject: 18.0621 Macbeth Curse
Comment: 	Re: SHK 18.0621 Macbeth Curse

As a secondary school English teacher, I taught Macbeth to Year 10 for 
most of the 12 years I spent working at an academically selective 
government school for girls -- a place independently acknowledged as one 
of the finest in Australia. Not once did I/we have any trouble that 
could be fantasised as due to the workings of a 'curse', and we did 
mount informal performances of extracts -- and our girls from time to 
time performed extracts in the Shakespeare Festival. The sleepwalking 
scene is always a favourite with teenagers.

I simply don't buy 'curses'. But then, I'm a sceptic and an unbeliever 
in religion/superstition.

Margaret Hargrave in Sydney

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Carol Morley <
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Date: 		Thursday, 20 Sep 2007 12:15:44 +0000
Subject: 18.0621 Macbeth Curse
Comment: 	RE: SHK 18.0621 Macbeth Curse

Dear David,

Are you now or have you ever been in the habit of quoting directly from 
the play IN AN ACTUAL THEATRE, while not actively involved in a 
rehearsal or performance of that play?

Yes?

Then you have only yourself to blame, but can easily rectify matters 
(depending on whom you believe) by leaving the room - wherever you are 
right now for instance, but it helps to have another person waiting 
inside. Once outside, turn round three times, spit, swear vehemently and 
knock on the door and ask to be let back in. All done. Or (apparently) 
you just quote Midsummer Night's dream as an antidote, which sounds just 
plain silly to me.

No?

Your car, laptop and body all need overhauling or replacing asap.

Not sure about my superstition levels regarding Macbeth, but I DO 
believe in coincidence!

Best,
Carol

[3]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From: 		Susan St. John <
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Date: 		Thursday, 20 Sep 2007 06:41:38 -0700
Subject: 18.0621 Macbeth Curse
Comment: 	Re: SHK 18.0621 Macbeth Curse

I would love to hear more personal anecdotes relating to the bad luck 
anyone has had while producing this play.  My students love to hear 
these real life stories!

A good friend of mine was directing this play at her high school and 
made sure to have two severed heads ready for that last scene - but come 
the first performance, neither one was anywhere to be found. The actor 
ended up carrying a towel on stage.  One head was later found to have 
been in a seat in the audience throughout the entire performance.  If 
you had been in the seat next to it, wouldn't you have wondered??

Susan St. John

[Editor's Note: A search of the SHAKSPER archives will turn up a number 
of tales of woe associated with the "curse." -Hardy]

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