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22 July 2013 @ 11:08 am
Manchester International Festival: Macbeth  
Watched the live broadcast of Kenneth Branagh's Macbeth on Saturday night! I love National Theatre Live because it gives me the chance to see shows that I a) couldn't get to and b) couldn't afford anyway for less than £15 and I hardly have to travel anywhere!

I adore Macbeth, it's one of my favourite Shakespeare's and Lady Macbeth is one of my top Shakespeare women so I definitely was not going to pass this show up. I'm glad I didn't as well because it was a-maz-ing.

The staging was excellent, set in a de-consecrated church with the audience on both sides, all the action happened in the centre with cast members using the whole space, running up and down the aisle from what I would assume to be from the old doors to the alter. There was rain and mud and I did wonder if anyone would fall over, but it really added to the piece in my opinion.

Branagh was spectacular, but Alex Kingston stole the show for me! Her Lady Macbeth was captivating. I studied the play at A Level and got very annoyed at the adaptations which portrayed her as completely evil because I really do not read her like that. Kingston’s portrayal felt more human, you could see in the first few scenes that every action of Macbeth and his wife was for the other, which in my opinion made the collapse in their relationship much more painful. Act 5, Scene 1, the “Out Dammed Spot” scene was staged beautifully, with Lady M. bathed in candlelight almost dancing through her madness.

I really did enjoy it! And NTLive are doing some Encore screenings soon, with the production being screened worldwide in October. Would definitely recommend it!
Ps. Special mention goes to the Weird Sisters who were actually scary and Alexander Vlahos who was very nice to look at as Malcolm!
Jules: Other: booksdiapadme on July 22nd, 2013 04:56 pm (UTC)
I really have to watch more plays. I mean I've been in theatres a lot more often now, but still. I need to see classics like these! So far I've only seen Hamlet, but that was back in 2009, I think.