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MACBETH Bevington, Chapter 18. The Scottish Play Spiritual Evil and the Drama of Conscience Always been among Shakespeare’s most popularAlways been among.

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Presentation on theme: "MACBETH Bevington, Chapter 18. The Scottish Play Spiritual Evil and the Drama of Conscience Always been among Shakespeare’s most popularAlways been among."— Presentation transcript:

1 MACBETH Bevington, Chapter 18

2 The Scottish Play Spiritual Evil and the Drama of Conscience Always been among Shakespeare’s most popularAlways been among Shakespeare’s most popular Highly theatricalHighly theatrical A vivid investigation of horrorA vivid investigation of horror Although he commits heinous deeds, Macbeth does not represent consummate evil; rather he is unforgettable because he is human.Although he commits heinous deeds, Macbeth does not represent consummate evil; rather he is unforgettable because he is human. First public performance at the Globe in 1611First public performance at the Globe in 1611 Performed at Hampton Court for King James and the Danish King in (James had married the King’s sister in 1589)Performed at Hampton Court for King James and the Danish King in (James had married the King’s sister in 1589)

3 A Scottish King and the English throne Powerful factions coveted the throne in 1603 since Elizabeth had not left an heir...James was related to Elizabeth through Henry VIIPowerful factions coveted the throne in 1603 since Elizabeth had not left an heir...James was related to Elizabeth through Henry VII The play explores regicideThe play explores regicide King James could trace his ancestry to BanquoKing James could trace his ancestry to Banquo Glamis Castle from a tourist brochure.

4 The Gunpowder Plot Catholic sympathizers tried to blow up Parliament in November It is celebrated today as Guy Fawkes day.Catholic sympathizers tried to blow up Parliament in November It is celebrated today as Guy Fawkes day. The play makes a specific reference to the event (2.3) Porter’s speechThe play makes a specific reference to the event (2.3) Porter’s speech As Shakespeare himself used to play to comment on contemporary politics, subsequent stage productions and films have, as wellAs Shakespeare himself used to play to comment on contemporary politics, subsequent stage productions and films have, as well At barely 2000 lines, it is among his shortest playsAt barely 2000 lines, it is among his shortest plays A cinematic quality to the play as many of the scenes unfold in two-character scenesA cinematic quality to the play as many of the scenes unfold in two-character scenes A print of the real Macbeth.

5 CHARACTERS Most of the characters based upon historical models from HolinshedMost of the characters based upon historical models from Holinshed Macbeth and Lady Macbeth among his most fully etched psychological portraits in tragedyMacbeth and Lady Macbeth among his most fully etched psychological portraits in tragedy Films structure and events lend it to expressionistic stagingFilms structure and events lend it to expressionistic staging Macbeth exercises free will, knowing with certainty what will befall him...bloodshed begets more bloodshed...as he admitsMacbeth exercises free will, knowing with certainty what will befall him...bloodshed begets more bloodshed...as he admits The only time she seems human is when she cannot bring herselfto kill the King because of his resemblance to her fatherThe only time she seems human is when she cannot bring herselfto kill the King because of his resemblance to her father

6 Moral Character Banquo is a co-consipirator in the murder of Duncan in HolinshedBanquo is a co-consipirator in the murder of Duncan in Holinshed Macduff is viewed as an avenging angelMacduff is viewed as an avenging angel Several named Thanes (Lennox, Seward, Ross) are prominentSeveral named Thanes (Lennox, Seward, Ross) are prominent The third murderer...who is he? (Ross, Seward, a 3rd hired killer?)The third murderer...who is he? (Ross, Seward, a 3rd hired killer?) One of the most famous minor characters is the PorterOne of the most famous minor characters is the Porter Duncan is a loved King whose death is pathetic because of his goodnessDuncan is a loved King whose death is pathetic because of his goodness

7 Sources and Inspirations HOLINSHED’S Chronicles (1587)HOLINSHED’S Chronicles (1587) On the Origins of the Scottish People (1578) On the Origins of the Scottish People (1578) James I was a prolific essayist who sponsored the 1604 edition of the Bible (KING JAMES VERSION)James I was a prolific essayist who sponsored the 1604 edition of the Bible (KING JAMES VERSION) He wrote a long tract against the use of tobaccoHe wrote a long tract against the use of tobacco Fascinated by the occult he wrote DAEMONOLOGIE (1597) which may have inspired some of the occult elements of the playFascinated by the occult he wrote DAEMONOLOGIE (1597) which may have inspired some of the occult elements of the play

8 LANGUAGE Shakespeare uses language to chart Macbeth’s groing adaptation to his role as a ruthless monarch and murdererShakespeare uses language to chart Macbeth’s groing adaptation to his role as a ruthless monarch and murderer It also traces Lady Macbeth’s descent into despair...as the play progresses, her speech becomes more irregular; by contrast, his speech becomes more composedIt also traces Lady Macbeth’s descent into despair...as the play progresses, her speech becomes more irregular; by contrast, his speech becomes more composed Two images dominate: blood and ambitionTwo images dominate: blood and ambition As with the fairies in MND, the Weird Sisters create an otherworldly auraAs with the fairies in MND, the Weird Sisters create an otherworldly aura Some sections from Middleton’s THE WITCH (1612) seem to have been interpolated into the play by those who edited the play for the first folioSome sections from Middleton’s THE WITCH (1612) seem to have been interpolated into the play by those who edited the play for the first folio

9 …signifying nothing Act Five, Scene 5 MACBETH[Re-enter Seyton.] Wherefore was that cry? SEYTON The queen, my lord, is dead. MACBETHShe should have died hereafter; There would have been a time for such a word. To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow, Creeps in this petty pace from day to day, To the last syllable of recorded time; And all our yesterdays have lighted fools The way to dusty death. Out, out, brief candle! Life's but a walking shadow; a poor player, That struts and frets his hour upon the stage, And then is heard no more: it is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing.

10 Themes and issues THE PERILS OF PRIDE AND VAULTING AMBITION Macbeth aspires to be King but he rarely leadsMacbeth aspires to be King but he rarely leads Yet, he knows the moral implications of his choicesYet, he knows the moral implications of his choices He is human in is deliberations, inhumane in his actionsHe is human in is deliberations, inhumane in his actions

11 Staging challenges The settingThe setting The witchesThe witches Bloody DeedsBloody Deeds Banquo’s GhostBanquo’s Ghost The Final FightThe Final Fight

12 Macbeth onstage The Scottish Play

13 Elizabethan Era First documented performance at the Globe on April 20, Simon Forman, an astrologer, saw the play and wrote about it in his diary. Evidence suggests that it was successfully performed at both homes of the King’s Men – Blackfriars and the Globe. Both spaces had machinery to fly and the floors were trapped.

14 The Restoration In 1663 William Davenant revised the original text to bring it more in line with neo-classical tastes. He revised the ending and interpolated a scene between Ladies Macbeth and Macduff. Some of the gory moments were deleted. Samuel Pepys saw the Davenant version eight times. David Garrick restored much of Shakespeare’s text in His version was highly popular well into the 19 th century.

15 18 th century Charles Macklin actually attempted a characteristically Scottish costume as early as Sarah Siddons became noted for her portrayal of Lady Macbeth.

16 19 th century - Gothic In the 19 th century, William Charles Macready triumphed in the title role in England and America. His performance in the role sparked the Astor Place Place riots in NYC (1849). Forrest Macready

17 Friedrich Mitterwurzer Mitterwurzer was a German actor who was heralded for his portrayal of Macbeth. He revolutionized the role as he added even more psych- ological depth to the role. In the photo at right, he is pictured with the German actor Max Staegemann.

18 Irving and terry One of the most famous producitons of the late-19 th century starred Henry Irving and Ellen Terry. 

19 20 th century – freudian shakespeare and others Notable performances at Stratford included Laurence Olivier (1955), Ian McKellan (1976) and Antony Sher (1999).

20 Orson welles ORSON WELLES version was first staged in Harlem in 1936 for the Federal Theatre Project. His 1948 film (pictured) used “voodoo” aspects of that early production.

21 KENNETH BRANAGH Manchester International Festival’s electrifying production features Kenneth Branagh with Alex Kingston as Lady Macbeth. It is directed by Rob Ashford and Kenneth Branagh. Originally staged in 2013, the production plays in New York in the summer of 2014.

22 Lincoln Center 2013

23 Act One, Scene 2

24 The witches were played by men

25 FILM AND VIDEO Macbeth

26 1948 – Orson Welles

27 1960 – Maurice evans

28 Polanski Polanski’s version was produced by PLAYBOY and featured a lot of nudity.

29 1979 – Ian Mckellan Directed by Trevor Nunn for Thames Television. This production starred Ian McKellan and Judi Dench. It was originally staged by the RSC.

30 1983 – Jack Gold NICOL WILLIAMSON, a Scottish actor, played the title role in the BBC version.

31 Patrick stewart (2009)

32 adaptations 1957 – Throne of Blood (Kurosawa)1957 – Throne of Blood (Kurosawa)

33 Australia Sam Worthington as Macbeth in a modern dress adaptation.

34 Verdi’s MACBETH (1865) “Till Birnam Wood do come toward Dunsinane” from a Metropolitan Opera production.

35 2002 Rock-opera by Dan SchaafTHE BLOODY DEAD IS DONE THE BLOODY DEAD IS DONETHE BLOODY DEAD IS DONE

36 SPIN-OFFS 1917 (Italy) The Lady from Minsk1917 (Italy) The Lady from Minsk 1955 (film noir) Joe Macbeth1955 (film noir) Joe Macbeth Joe Macbeth Joe Macbeth 1961 (Poland) Siberian Lady Macbeth1961 (Poland) Siberian Lady Macbeth 1991 (William Reilly) Men of Respect1991 (William Reilly) Men of Respect 2002 (Billy Morrissette) Scotland, PA2002 (Billy Morrissette) Scotland, PA

37 Scotland, PA (2002)

38 Shakespeare Retold Macbeth (2005) (BBC-TV) Director - Mark Brozel Writers - Peter Moffat Joe Macbeth (James McAvoy) is the hard-working head chef of a high-class restaurant in Glasgow. The restaurant is owned by famous television chef Duncan Docherty (Vincent Regan), who gets all the fame for Joe's hard work. Working with Joe at the restaurant are his wife and maitre d' Ella (Keeley Hawes), his friend and fellow cook Billy (Joeseph Milson), Duncan's son, working as a waiter, Malcolm (Toby Kebbell) and head waiter Peter Macduff (Richard Armitage).

39 1896 – UBU ROI Alfred Jarry’s “absurdist” play premiered in Paris in 198. It is about a stupid and cowardly Polish king who maintains power by killing and maiming all who oppose him. The title translates to “King Turd.”

40 1967 Macbird! by Barbara GarsonMacbird! by Barbara Garson

41 1977 Cahoots MACBETH by Tom Stoppard The play is usually performed with Dogg’s Hamlet. It shows a shortened performance of the play carried out under the eyes of a secret police officer who suspects the actors of subversion against the state. It is dedicated to the Czech playwright Pavel Kohout whom Stoppard met in Prague in 1977 many years prior to the Velvet Revolution.

42 Alan Cummings on Broadway 2013


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