Wednesday 13 November 2019

Ad - Proteus presents Macbeth at the Connaught Theatre, Worthing

The Tragedy of Macbeth by Shakespeare is thought to have been first performed in 1606. It tells the tale of the Scottish General Macbeth, told by three witches that he will become King of Scotland. Encouraged by his wife, Macbeth kills the the king, in order to become the new king, and then driven by guilt and paranoia goes on to commit more and more murders to protect himself, until the play reaches a tragic end.

Macbeth by Proteus review

In this production, Proteus Theatre Company set the action of the play in October 1987, against the backdrop of the Great Storm and the stock market crash. The play has an ethnically diverse cast, and is a highly physical interpretation interwoven with a soundtrack of 80s hits alongside contemporary music, performed using a minimal and multi-purpose set.

Before watching the production, I made sure to familiarise myself with the events of play, as although the setting is modern, the play is performed in the original Shakespearean text which isn't always easy to understand. This was definitely a good move, as I found the action a little tricky to follow at times, especially as the small cast meant that most actors were required to portray several characters.

Despite the tragedy unfolding on stage, there were some lighter moments which brought a smile. I also enjoyed the ingenuity of the set, mainly composed of just three pieces that were moved and rotated by the cast between scenes to be used as, among other things, tables, windows and phone boxes.

I was glad to have the opportunity to see this production, and I enjoyed watching a different and unusual take on the play.

You can find a study guide to this production here - Macbeth Education Pack

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