I recently finished the novel Station Eleven, set after a global flu pandemic, where a troupe travel the post-apocalyptic USA performing Shakespeare plays. Yep, picked a great time to read that one. But I'm delighted to learn that a group of Fallout 76 roleplayers have formed a troupe of actors performing plays inside Bethesda's post-apocalyptic MMO, and recently staged Macbeth inside their own version of the Globe theatre.
Here's The Theatre Company's Macbeth as captured for Twitch by the Fallout Five-0:
"During Covid-19, theatres around the world have had to close, so our group of drama-loving video game players took to the stage in-game, held rehearsals, and performed live to an audience in-game and streamed online," Macbeth director "Northern Harvest" told our corporate siblings at The European Gamer.
"This also adds commentary to how the arts survive during crisis: whether in post-apocalyptic Appalachia, or during a Covid-19 pandemic in real life. The arts find a way to survive."
I appreciated this behind-the-scenes peek too:
This is what it looked like backstage during the live on-stage performance of Macbeth.— The Theatre Company 🎭 (@76Theatre) October 25, 2021
Actors changing wardrobe, listening to cues, preparing to take the stage.
A true performance! 🎭#fallout76 pic.twitter.com/cUkT6rmV6k
Thinking of other post-apocaplays, I also like Russel Hoban's novel Riddley Walker, where the eponymous young lad in post-apocalyptic Kent performs a hallowed puppet show which muddles the legend of Saint Eustace with events of the Cold War. Good book, that.
Elsewhere in virtuaShakespeare, I know "Rustic Mascara" ran into problems this year attempting to perform Hamlet in a GTA Online public lobby:
If you're interested in performance art inside games, you might dig Joseph DeLappe, who has staged protests and more on public multiplayer servers. His Quake/Friends saw six people performing F.R.I.E.N.D.S. scripts in Quake 3. And in dead-in-iraq, he visited America's Army servers to list the deaths of US service members in Iraq.
Follow The Theatre Company on Twitter for more on future performances. Looking ahead, they're planning The Nutcracker, presumably for Christmastime:
Working on Tchaikovsky's "The Nutcracker" at our Bolshoi Theatre. 🧸🎄 pic.twitter.com/TeHBfZ3Wkj— The Theatre Company 🎭 (@76Theatre) November 6, 2021