Thousands tune in to Oddsocks’ Macbeth

Published: 20 May 2020
Reporter: Steve Orme

Andy Barrow as Macbeth
“Out, damned spot”: Elli Mackenzie as Lady Macbeth

An audience of more than 3,000 tuned in online to see touring theatre company Oddsocks’ performance of Macbeth, filmed live from the home of the company’s directors.

"Macbeth really seemed to hit the mark," said creative producer Elli Mackenzie who played Lady Macbeth.

"We didn't know whether anyone would tune in but just before we went on air our director, who was hosting the performance through his streaming theatre in Los Angeles, told us that there were 1,500 people across the world tuned in already and that grew as the performance started."

Artistic director Andy Barrow who played Macbeth added, "the response since the broadcast has been tremendous. People have been in touch via social media and e-mail in their droves, telling us that it's made their lockdown and how they needed a laugh and our performance provided that."

The Oddsocks family told the story using a trimmed original text, three mobile phones, a number of laptops and a range of household items such as kitchen spatulas for swords, a colander for Macbeth's helmet and dolls and a unicorn slipper for apparitions.

Andy and Elli's 19-year-old daughter Charlie was roped in to play the roles of Macduff and Banquo and enjoyed the experience so much she says she is signing up for the next performance.

Director Kevin Kemp of The Streaming Theatre said, "we used twitch.tv as our streaming platform which is usually used by gamers and has recently been expanding into music. This may well be one of the first Shakespeare plays to have been aired via the platform and that’s really exciting as it may have brought a new audience to Shakespeare."

The Streaming Theatre will host a live question-and-answer session about the making of Macbeth on Friday 22 May at 7:30PM.

In response to requests from viewers, Macbeth has been posted on the Oddsocks web site. The company’s next live-edited Shakespeare play will be A Midsummer Night's Dream on Friday 19 June at 7PM.