MacHamlet goes West

… and meets a Tempest!
Part 3 of the MacHamlet trilogy

To order scripts ISBN 978-1-873855-70-6Cast ListScenesExtractProduction photos

Note that The Trilogy is now available as a single publication ISBN 978-1-873855-72-0


By the time we get to 1056, our stalwarts had played the first game of football in Scotland in 1040 (see MacHamlet) and taken part in the European cup in Venice in 1042 which turned into a water polo match (see Bard Again!). Here, fourteen years later, we see them on a cruise to the Atlantic isles, where The Tempest takes hold of them.

I hope you'll enjoy performing this pantomime of a play.

Knowledge of the relevant Shakespeare plays will make the experience more enjoyable for cast and audience, but is certainly not a prerequisite.

Running time approx 2 hours including interval

Principals: 23, of whom 6 male & 4 female as indicated; for the rest, genders can be swapped - treat it as a pantomime!

The year is 1056 which, as it happens, is the year before Macbeth's untimely death in the Battle of Lumphanan.

Cast List . . .

The Scottish Team:

Mac Macbeth, thane of Mylife, opportunist goal-seeker
Beth Macbeth
his wife & team director
Witch One
(Morag) organiser of Scottish cheerleaders
Witch Two
(Kirsty) a cheery cheerleader
Witch Three
(Bella) a dour cheerleader
Duncan King
team captain
Banquo the Ghost
a phantom winger
Birnam Wood
from where we get defence
Glen & Morangie
supporters of the Scottish distilleries

The Danish Team:

Hamlet formerly known as Prince, dead ball specialist
Hamlet's mother, team trainer, now married to Claudius
disputed team captain
a solid goalkeeper
good with the head
team manager
team masseuse
Carl & Berg
probably the best lager louts in the world

The Islanders:

Prospero the master of the Island
his daughter
Caliban his servant
Ariel a clean fairy

List of Scenes . . .

Act I

Scene 1 – The Witches convene
Scene 2 – In a Scottish pub
Scene 3 – Witches wonder which way
Scene 4 – The Scots prepare for the Cruise
Scene 5 – On-board entertainment
Scene 6 – The Witches make landfall
Scene 7 – Cruise arrival
Scene 8 – On the beach

**** INTERVAL ****

Act II

Scene 1 – Prospero & Polonius
Scene 2 – On the beach again
Scene 3 – The Witches visit Prospero
Scene 4 – Miranda's idea
Scene 5 – Beach Volleyball competition
Scene 6 – Round-up
Scene 7 – Heading for home

Extract – The first scene

Act I Scene 1 – The Witches convene

(The three witches declaim from different points in the auditorium, moving towards the stage.)

Witch 1 What brings us to this place again?
Witch 2 Why, Morag, you're the one to blame.
Witch 3 You sent a message, so we came. (Holds up a scrap of paper)
Witch 2 A coven in the Scottish rain.
Witch 1 I sent no message.
Witch 2 You did so. (Holds up another scrap of paper)
Witch 3 We both received it days ago.
Witch 2 It said to meet you here at eight.
Witch 3 Or thereabouts, but don't be late.
Witch 2 So here we are.
Witch 1 I sent no note.
Witch 3 Oh yes you did.
Witch 2 It came by boat.
Witch 3 It came ashore down by the dunes…
Witch 2 All neatly written down in runes.
Witch 1 In runes you say? I know that phrase.
 You know who writes in runes these days.
Witch 3 The Danes who came to us before.
Witch 2 Perhaps we'd better lock the door!
Witch 3 There's no door, Kirsty.
Witch 2 What? Good grief!
Witch 3 We're standing on a blasted heath!
Witch 1 Dinna fash yerself. They're after Wags.
 They won't be wanting us old hags!
Witch 2 I'm not so sure that's true to say.
 We're quite bewitching in our way.
Witch 3 Wicked!
Witch 2 But I'd like to ken
 Why the Danes are back again.
Witch 1 Yes. There must be some good reason.
Witch 3 Maybe it's the football season!
Witch 2 Not again! Time's moving fast.
 It's fourteen years since we played last.
Witch 1 They'll have some different scam to sell us.
Witch 3 There's nothing in the runes to tell us.
Witch 1 But by the pricking of my thumbs,
 Something once more this way comes.
 Away, my sisters, and keep watch.

(The witches exit)
(Hamlet enters to 'Air on a G string' and slowly starts to light up a small cigar. The stage manager enters quickly and takes the cigar.)

Stage Manager No smoking. Don't you remember?

(The music stops)

Hamlet I know, I know. It hasn't been discovered yet. But we mean to change all that.
Stage Manager You and whose army? (Exits)
Hamlet (Looks at his watch) Ah, 1056. Time for a little refreshment, I think, before my appointment. (Takes out a can of Carlsberg)

(Re-enter Witch 1)

Witch 1 So you're back again, and still on the gnat's water I see.
Hamlet We Danes have been brewing this for a very long time.
Witch 1 Without much improvement, in my opinion.
Hamlet It is probably the best…
Witch 1 …probably the best lemonade in the world. I'll drink to that.
Hamlet Where I come from, that is fighting talk.
Witch 1 Where you come from anything is fighting talk. (Holds up one of the scraps of paper) You were the author of this, I assume.
Hamlet It is in my hand.
Witch 1 You wanted me to convene a coven.
Hamlet And are you fresh from the coven?
Witch 1 I am. But the coven is turned off at the moment.
Hamlet No cake then?
Witch 1 Pardon?
Hamlet If the coven is turned off.
Witch 1 I shall ignore that apology of a pun. The coven is turned off because the message was in runes, and we are not good at runes.
Hamlet Ah, in that case you need my patent Rune to Roman translator.
Witch 1 What's that?
Hamlet (Holds up a largish Rubik's cube made of Lego) It is my runic cube. You line the runes up on one side and the translation appears on the other.
Witch 1 I see. Or rather, I don't.
Hamlet But you will see if you follow the instructions.
Witch 1 R-ight. Look, why don't you just tell me what the message is without having me fiddle around with your runes?
Hamlet That would ruin the story.
Witch 1 Enough! Are you going to tell me? – or am I going to turn around and go home?
Hamlet All right! We have started a new business, and we would like your Scottish people to be our first customers.
Witch 1 And all this rune stuff is your attempt at marketing?
Hamlet Well you have to admit it is different.
Witch 1 It's pathetic. Whose idea was it?
Hamlet You remember Ophelia?
Witch 1 Your little bit on the side? Yes, I remember her.
Hamlet She likes to travel.
Witch 1 So I've heard.
Hamlet In boats.
Witch 1 Oh, that too.
Hamlet And we have recently made discoveries in the West.
Witch 1 Bailey, Rockall, Shannon…
Hamlet Further west than that. We have found a New World.
Witch 1 To rape and pillage, no doubt.
Hamlet Madam, we have left all that behind. We are now responsible seafarers.
Witch 1 Oh yes, since when?
Hamlet You have heard of Viking cruises?
Witch 1 I don't watch daytime television repeats.
Hamlet Nor should you, even when they have been invented.
Witch 1 I'll bear that in mind. So, your Viking cruises…
Hamlet Our Viking cruises will transport you in unaccustomed luxury to the four corners of the world.
Witch 1 Four corners? Haven't we discovered that the world's round yet?
Hamlet Not if you want to stay friends with the Pope. But my corners are metaphorical.
Witch 1 Ah! Are we getting to the point yet?
Hamlet We need a Scottish representative if we are to sell the cruises here.
Witch 1 What's in it for us?
Hamlet Free holidays to exotic locations.
Witch 1 Balcony cabins?
Hamlet On a longship? I am afraid that is a luxury yet to come. Maybe a tarpaulin to cover you in a storm.
Witch 1 Sounds like it could be a difficult product to sell.
Hamlet It depends on what you are used to. And anyway…
Witch 1 Yes?
Hamlet They will not understand the brochure, because it will be in runes!
Witch 1 Clever! Now I see why you want to employ witches.
Hamlet Why is that?
Witch 1 To get a good review in the Witch report!

(They exit)

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