Skip to comments.'The Simpsons' Go Shakespearean
Posted on 10/13/2008 4:34:34 PM PDT by nickcarraway
Comedian Rick Miller recently adapted the Shakespeare classic Macbeth into a one-man production by casting characters from The Simpsons into the dark play about lethal ambition. Backed up by a simple stage, a few props and a slipcovered television as Express Night Put it, Miller created and performed the adaptation all by himself, using mostly Shakespeare's original words. He says they were fairly easy to adapt.
"'Macbeth' is a pretty simple, straightforward story," Miller said. "It's probably one of the shorter tragedies it seems to fit very well with this one dysfunctional family doing another dysfunctional family." Your Take RadarLove said: I can't wait for a Simpsons version of MacBeth! see all » MashaZhilova2 said: Te Simpsons as Macbeth, hmmm I guess it is the only to get the youth to learn about the classics see all » RISHANTYNARCISCO2 said: ...............great..........!!!!! see all »
Miller tags the production as MacHomer, where Homer Simpson plays the titular character, the ambitious man who murders the king to capture the throne. Miller casts Marge Simpson as Lady MacBeth, Barney Gumble as Macduff, and millionaire Montgomery Burns as Duncan, the king.
Miller, who mimicked over 50 voices in the world of The Simpsons, says that his endeavor was paying homage to the classics, instead of what other people think that he was making fun of them.
"I know a lot of people don't realize that Shakespeare was pop culture at the time," he said. "He had, to me, the kind of creative mind that would have really liked the satire of 'The Simpsons.' Going to a Shakespeare play at the time wasn't a calm, reverential event the way it is now. It was much bawdier, and it brought together all kinds of different people."
In fact, The Simpson's creator Matt Groening gave Miller the blessing to keep performing the show after the two met at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. Miller adds that most of his supporters include teachers and Shakespeare devotees.
"Not only does the show promote 'The Simpsons' in a time when they're not getting as much press as they used to but also it's a great show for high school kids or people who hate Shakespeare," he said. "Teachers love the show. It's one of the reasons I keep doing it. It's a silly show, but ultimately it's a way of bringing Shakespeare to people who would otherwise never step into a darkened theater. It's a good introduction; it's a way to give Shakespeare a chance."
Rick Miller serves as the artistic director for WYRD productions, which produced his solo shows, Art? and Slightly Bent. he also searves as the host of ABC's Just For Laughs.
Back in the late 80s they did this with Moonlighting. Instead of Macbeth, they did The Taming of the Shrew, with Cybill Shepherd as Kate (Katherina) and Bruce Willis as Petruchio. Bruce rode in to the first scene on a white horse, sitting in a saddle prominently marked with the BMW logo.
We hate iambic pentameter!
I'd forgotten that!
Why not, they did Planet of the Apes once.
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