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The Scottish Play

Last night Jane and I went to see Creation Theatre’s rendering of Macbeth. Like many settings of Shakespeare, it wasn’t in Elizabethan garb but dressed up in something more contemporary; costumes remeniscent of WWI. I don’t think I really grasped the particular significance of this but it certainly didn’t detract from what is a tragic story.

In preparing for the performance, I did some homework (I think Thug Notes was the highlight, packing a synopsis and analysis into five minutes) and it sounds like the main question that is asked of the play is who is to blame. I don’t think the source of the evil can be seen anywhere other than the witches; the maleficent weird sisters speak prophesies that, while “true”, seem edited to cause maximum harm. However, Macbeth and his wife take the bait and, by egging each other on, throw themselves over the precipice.

If I were staging the play, I think I would make the setting more modern still and cast the witches as voices of the media: revealing truths but only to provoke the next headline. However, I’d love to have the Creation Theatre team on board. They made wonderful use of the space and, for our hour or two almost upon the stage, made full use of the setting of Lady Margaret Hall to take us to Dunsinane.

It runs for one more week and, if you are near Oxford, comes highly recommended.

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