Rift's Macbeth: so foul and fair a play you might never have seen. Photograph: Camilla Greenwell
Rift’s Macbeth: so foul and fair a play you might never have seen. Photograph: Camilla Greenwell

Sleepovers can be dark, scary, sexy, curious: Rift’s Macbeth promises to be all this and more.

Following the success of last year’s The Trial, enacted across Hoxton by this pint-sized, innovative theatre company, the outfit returns with Shakespeare’s timeless tragedy –  witches, conspiracy and murder being the perfect bedfellows for a midsummer’s eve.

Fiery, sinister and timelessly eerie, Macbeth is a good choice for Rift to take on – their track record of producing immediate, stomach-churning theatre stands them in good stead to put on a knock-out show.

This overnight production, staged in a ‘brutalist architectural masterpiece’ in East London until August, comes at a moment when immersive theatre is on everyone’s lips. Headed up by Felix Mortimer and Joshua Nawras, Rift – whose previous works include The Wall and O Brave New World – can be counted alongside Punchdrunk and Secret Cinema for pioneering an intensely interactive form of performance that places the audience at the centre of the action.

Director Felix Mortimer says: “Macbeth will push the boundaries of form, experimenting with dreams and the subconscious. The audience will be taken in groups to the location, the action unfolding around them: they will be a part of it. This is an exciting stage in our development.”

Macbeth promises its audience a thrilling night of intrigue and drama to awaken the imagination, and perhaps scare you silly. The play’s characters will visit the gathered crowd in the night, enacting the chilling events surrounding Duncan’s murder and finally waking you at dawn for the final act. ‘Macbeth seen from the inside out’ will be a feast for the senses, heightened by the dark and the outdoors; stepping inside the Scottish scourge, you will come “face-to-face with witches … feasting with the Macbeths … as a siege rages around you”. This may be the most outrageous invitation to bed you’ve ever received.

Steel your nerves and take your place in the hallowed halls of this yet unknown location out east for a long night of toil and trouble.

Macbeth will be at a secret East London location until August.


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