I said I was going to branch out... It's time for tea-tre; thank you Georgia for the name :)
I hope you don't mind the fact I'm doing something new with the blog. I'll be showcasing awesome things, so maybe you'll like it.
Title: Macbeth (in Pitch Black)
Writer: William Shakespeare
Performed by: London Contemporary Theatre
Major cast: Noel Andrew Harron, Louise Bereford, Samuel Clifford, James Burgess, Andrew Chase,
Director: Kevin Williams
Seen at: Windsor Firestation
Other Info: toured in November. Shakespeare has written many things.
Review: I really like Shakespeare (as you might be able to tell from my fangirling over the internet), so when I saw this advertised at the Firestation, one of my favourite places, I was intrigued because they say they’re doing it in the dark. Then I got told one of my major pieces of coursework would be on Macbeth, and I knew I had to see it.
When we got there, the lights were down low in the foyer of the theatre as well, because The Dark Room was playing too, and the bar and everything was lit with UV and glowsticks. Then we were shown down to the basement, which was scary, because somebody thought it was a good idea to get about 100 people down some stairs, lighting it only with two tiny lanterns where the stairs turn corners. We got there though.
Despite the title, it’s not all in pitch black. Certain scenes used lights of various kinds, such as “candles” for Lady Macbeth, lights in balloons for the feast, lights in trashcans for the witches, and torches for the end. The sudden lights were used effectively, only for major scenes; more plotty, wordy, less actiony scenes were left in the dark. Doing it all in the dark was a really interesting way of staging it. I think it really made you listen more to what was happening, and is a very different way of performing a play.
The cast are amazingly talented. There’s five people doing the whole thing. Ok, some roles were cut down and some were merged, but everyone bar Macbeth took on more than one role, using voice to differentiate. Also, how on earth did they manage to move around and get everywhere they needed to be without repeatedly falling over things? Witchcraft, I tell you.
It’s cut down a lot. They kept the major bits in, and cut down the wordier bits, and most of the angsty bit with Macduff. They updated it a bit, using phones in place of messengers and some other touches that put it firmly in the modern world.
I loved the staging of it. The Basement in the Firestation has a small stage at the front and the rest of the room is flat. The chairs were set out on the flat, and the stage was on the flat too, with chairs making an aisle down the stage and some more to the side. This set up was really good, especially as I was sitting on the side of the stage