MacBird! – Barbara Garson (1967)

MacBird! is a 1967 satire by Barbara Garson that superimposed the transferral of power following the Kennedy assassination onto the plot of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. Thus John F. Kennedy becomes ‘John Ken O’Dunc’, Lyndon Johnson becomes ‘MacBird’, Lady Bird Johnson becomes ‘Lady MacBird’, and so forth. As Macbeth assassinates Duncan, so MacBird is responsible for the assassination of Ken O’Dunc; and as Macbeth is defeated by Macduff, so MacBird is defeated by Robert Ken O’Dunc (i.e. Robert Kennedy). This action is significantly influenced by the Three Witches, representing Students, Blacks, and Leftists. … The play parodies sequences from Shakespearean tragedies including Macbeth, Hamlet, and Richard III, albeit with Texas and Boston accents. The action follows MacBird from the 1960 Democratic National Convention, when he becomes John Ken O’Dunc’s Vice-President (‘Hail, Vice-President thou art!’), to Ken O’Dunc’s assassination (at the urging of Lady MacBird), to a future Robert Ken O’Dunc victory over MacBird at the 1968 convention. Macbird! started out as a short satirical sketch by Garson, a recent graduate of the Berkeley anti-Vietnam war movement. It was developed into a full-length play with help from writer/director Roy Levine (and Shakespeare). …”
U. Texas – MacBird!: a history and feminist critique of Barbara Garson’s radical play
MacBird!: little-known masterpiece of counterculture literature

About 1960s: Days of Rage

Bill Davis - 1960s: Days of Rage
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