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Every year, half a million brawny bikers descend on one small South Dakota town. This is the first time they hopped off their Harleys to recite Shakespeare.
For the 76th summer in a row, motorcycle riders and enthusiasts from around the world recently gathered in Sturgis, a small town in the Black Hills of South Dakota. It is, without a doubt, the Mecca of Motorcycles — a pilgrimage for bikers and a place to show off the mind-bending customizations they’ve made to their Harleys. But this year, thanks to the presence of the Bird Cage Theatrics Company, it also happened to be the place to witness the most realistic rendition of Shakespeare this side of the West End.
Along with all of those bikers, the company’s actors and actresses (including one biker in their midst) made the trek from their Wyoming base to Sturgis a few weeks ago. Their aim: to bring Macbeth to a seemingly new audience — and exactly as the Bard intended it (i.e., with a bit more violence than you’re likely to see in the dinner-theater version). The show’s producers admit to having a rough go of it the first couple of days when bikers who just wanted a night out drinking were assaulted by Shakespearian prose. But in the end, they managed to avoid a biker brawl and even won over a few new fans for ye olde Bard.
Check out the mini-doc above for a glimpse of Macbeth … on motorcycles.
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This story is republished from MEL Magazine. MEL aims to challenge, inspire and encourage readers to drop any preconceived notions of who they’re supposed to be.
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