Game of Thrones on stage

Before Game of Thrones, there was Macbeth.  

This month, we are celebrating the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare at New Vintage Theatre with the most provocative and spellbinding of his plays, Macbeth, skillfully directed by Kendra Hesketh, Oct. 6-16. 

There will be mead tastings, mandolin music, swordplay, a real cauldron for wicked spells and of course, there will be blood. 

It is my favourite of all of The Bard’s plays.

Historically, producing Macbeth has been fraught with danger. Between the supernatural elements and murders, most actors adhere to the superstition to never, ever say Macbeth in a theatre for it is considered bad luck. 

Despite this, there have been a number of theatre companies around the world that have recently returned to Shakespeare’s bloodiest and most thrilling play, most notably Sleep No More, in New York where an entire hotel was taken over with each room a different scene from the play. 

In our complex and compelling production in the edgy Black Box Theatre, Hesketh has added all the elements to give the audience an unforgettable ride that will leave them on the edge of their seats from beginning to finish. 

Although a newcomer to directing, Hesketh is an expert in the field of everything Shakespeare. 

She has performed many of his works as an actress and she and her partner, Orrin Nesdoly, are heavily involved in the medieval recreation community called the Society for Creative Anachronisms and travel throughout the summer to participate in battles and ceremonies.

She once played one of the three witches and even Lady Macbeth. All these skills and knowledge have come in handy for Shakespeare’s most challenging play. 

Nesdoly has the equivalent of a black belt in sword fighting in the medieval community and has been working with the cast to create memorable fight choreography.

 “Macbeth is really the original Game of Thrones,” says Ms. Hesketh excitedly. We have taken the play and incorporated all of the traditional elements of blood, sword fighting and terror, but included our own twists.

“For instance, this production has a timeless dystopia feel and there is gender blind casting, so some traditionally male characters will be played by women; a real twist on the original production where men played female roles."

Macbeth stars Doug Brown in the title role with Ashley Plomp as Lady Macbeth.

It features an outstanding cast of local artists including: Natasha Daley, Graham Daley, Zack Fox, Tamara Ross, Tamie Williams, Dana Murphy, Zoe Sommerfield, Sheila Campbell, Kaitlyn Anutooshkin, Blake Wilkins, Evan Jackson and Aaron Johnson with period music from Susan Adams and Clive Tittmus of Early Music Studio of Kelowna.

“Our cast is also second to none primed and ready for the many twists, turns and battles The Scottish Play presents,” says the director.

So turn off the TV and get your Nexflix hit live by coming to see Macbeth.  

Macbeth is at The Black Box Theatre, 7 p.m., Oct. 6-14 and Oct.16 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $20 in advance from  or $30 (cash only) at the door. 

More Bonnie on Stage articles

About the Author

Bonnie Gratz is an actor, director, and playwright. She is the Artistic Director of Kelowna's New Vintage Theatre, and a member of the Playwright's Guild of Canada and The Literary and Dramaturges of North America. 

For more on Bonnie, check out www.bonnie-gratz.com or check out www.newvintage.ca

Contact Bonnie at:  [email protected]


The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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