Macbeth at Shakespeare's Globe features action, even humour

Posted Jul 6, 2013 by Marcus Hondro
The Scottish play has had more productions in London alone than most plays will ever receive anywhere. But providing the director provides a fresh approach while serving the text audiences will support Shakespeare's great tragedy.
Logo of Dubrovnik Shakespeare Festival
Logo of Dubrovnik Shakespeare Festival
The major directorial debut of great U.K. stage actress Eve Best at Shakespeare's Globe, this latest Macbeth has reviewers speaking well of Best's ability to keep the action moving and make the story compelling all over again. She's also been praised for her use of humor.
"This is one of the funniest productions of “The Scottish Play” I’ve seen," Tim Auld of the Telegraph writes. "An odd thing to say about a work which charts the transformation of a great warrior into a tyrannical psychopath." Mr. Auld notes Best has done a great job of "embracing the gallows humor" of the relentlessly bloody play.
Zoe Craig writing for The Londonist notes that the performances are strong and praises Joseph Millson as Macbeth and Samantha Spiro as his scheming and diabolical wife. Both, Craig says, bring a tremendous stage presence to the fore and Spiro's physicality makes Lady Macbeth come all the more alive.
Meanwhile, another production of the play, with Kenneth Branagh playing the title role, and co-directing along with Rob Ashford, is running at the Manchester International Festival in a deconsecrated Victorian church. Michael Billington of the Guardian calls by comparison the Shakespeare's Globe production "lightweight" and he writes that Branagh's production "gets closer to the heart of the play's mystery."
The Globe's production runs until October 13th and along the way there are 'study' days in which scholars address the audience pre-show, aided by actors illustrating their talks with moments from scenes. There are also post-show Q and A's scheduled throughout the run with actors and creatives.
That information is noted on the theatre's website, linked above.