The concept for the Macbeth Poster was crafted by Macbeth director, Calder Johnson. Johnson envisioned a dark corruption of the classic American Gothic painting, showing the Macbeths as a family broken by ambition.
Photography was provided by Evan Wisheropp of Evan Wish Photography. We’ve worked with Evan on many occasions and have always been thrilled with his ability to create an amazing mood with lighting effects. I’m an enormous fan of bringing texture into theatre posters, as a way of helping to build the realism of the scene. In this case Evan used a simple black backdrop, which we were able to accentuate with a stock photography grunge texture in order to give the illusion of light falling upon Lord and Lady Macbeth and grazing the walls of their shadowy realm.
For the title font, we reused Caslon Antique – an old favorite which is the universal font for the play Les Miserables (NCRT production also directed by Calder Johnson.) The stark red was in sharp contrast to both the black background and the richer crimson of the blood on the Macbeth faces and is intended to grab the attention of the viewer with a message of danger. In a creepy juxtaposition, we used the cursive font Mistral in a welcoming beige color for the name of the playwright. Date and website were done in all caps in Felix Tilting at 85% vertical stretch with extreme padding between letters to give a classic Roman feel. This subliminal shout out allowed us to tie in impressions of grandeur, battle, and ultimate collapse invoked by the memory of Western civilization’s fallen superpower.
For Facebook publicity, we isolated the Macbeths. For several of the shots, we placed the blood stained Lady Macbeth in the foreground with heavy shadow, indicating both her importance to the play and her tendency to move in the background, but for the cover photo we went with a Hollywood approach, giving one half of each face on the sides of the banner.