With coyotes harmonizing alongside the Weird Sisters and Birnam (okay, Topanga) Wood choking the stage, Theatricum Botanicums outdoor atmosphere compensates for a serviceable Shakespeare. Directors Ellen Geer and Chad Jason Scheppner marshal an army of creeping witches and sword-slinging soldiers, most of whom pose too much and talk too fast, helmed by a miscast Jim LeFave as a diffident Macbeth whose political ambitions feel akin to Michael Dukakis in a tank. Hes pressed but not pushed by Melora Marshalls Lady Macbeth, a lithe villainess good at scheming but better when she flings herself to the ground in fits of specious humility a deft comic touch. Giggles sprang at stabbings and beheadings out of place in a production that lacks grand horror and outrage, despite strong performances, including Mike Peeblers Malcolm, Michael McFalls Banquo and Aaron Hendry as the vengeful but guilt-stricken Macduff.
Fridays, Saturdays, 8 p.m.; Sun., June 29, 7:30 p.m.; Saturdays, 4 p.m.; Fri., Aug. 15, 8 p.m.; Sundays, 7:30 p.m.; Sat., Sept. 20, 4 p.m. Starts: June 7. Continues through Sept. 28, 2008