Macbeth, Wilton's Music Hall - ★★★★★ - Until February 8, 2020

Photographer: Pamela Raith.

Paul Hart's thrilling production of Macbeth fits perfectly onto Wilton's split level stage and looks spectacular in Katie Lias' looming design and Tom White's lighting. Some drastic cutting of Shakespeare's text excludes the witches as such but their supernatural presence is always felt. Turning the Macbeths' castle into a sleazy hotel is an original idea and is well developed. Any production of Macbeth stands or falls on the protagonists, and here we have a slightly different take on their relationship. Emma McDonald's well spoken glamourous hotel/bordello owner certainly exuded sexuality, but for once we felt that it was Macbeth himself who was the instigator of the catastrophe. Billy Postlethwaite's charismatic, edgy, gangling thane speaks the words with great intelligence; we almost felt that he could rule alone. Music from The Rolling Stones to Johnny Cash illuminate the play and the multi-talented ensemble of ten worked together superbly, especially following an unexpected last minute cast change. Several gender swaps seemed perfectly natural especially Robyn Sinclair's feisty Banquo. Duncan's murder is the best staged we've ever seen. The final battle is terrifically well choreographed and brings a thrilling evening to a tremendous conclusion. When it's as well done as this, small-scale Shakespeare remains unbeatable!

Reviewed by D.S.J.

 Our Score:  ☆☆☆☆☆ 

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WHEN, WHERE, GETTING THERE:
Until February 8, 2020
Tue - Sat: 7:30, Thu & Sat: 2:30 pm
Wilton's Music Hall
Nearest station: Tower Hill
http://wiltons.org.uk/whatson/609-macbeth

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