Christine Tjia

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Shakespeare in the Park – Macbeth

Pondered by = Christine =

The Singapore Repertory Theatre’s (SRT) acclaimed Shakespeare in the Park returned again with a production of the tragedy Macbeth.

Long before vampires and witches become fashionable, Shakespeare wrote Macbeth, one of his most dazzling and mysterious masterpieces. I was fascinated by the political intrigue, impressed by the love exciting battle scenes and most of all, awed by the relish luscious language (which made me wonder how life would be if we all communicate in it).

Directed by the celebrated British director Nikolai Foster (Flashdance on the London West End, the UK tour of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Aspects of Love), Macbeths’ destructive, volatile and sexually charged relationship will be brought to the fore in this contemporary take on The Bard’s last great tragedy. Foster trimmed peripheral scenes and characters to propel the rhythm of his Hollywood thriller-esque Macbeth with bloody battle scenes, anachronistically-detailed costumes, quirky props and pyrotechnic blasts - belched flames and smoke. He was able to give the audience an immersive experience with four-dimensional production - sound (some of the gunshots were slightly loud), light, music and murder by weaving the outdoor environment into the production's story line.

My fave are Adrian Pang (always), who played the luckless General and handles the dramatic final scenes with aplomb and the three witches, who deserved all the applause for their realness in the characters. The malevolence and spookiness of the witches are portrayed perfectly. During intermission, they crept and crawled as well as scorned at the audience, successfully sets the mood for the following scenes and subsequently won my heart. The interplay of ambience and stage lighting also contributed much to the sinister atmosphere.

All in all - sitting on a picnic mat, with blessed weather, beneath the clear evening sky with gentle wind stroking your face, watching Shakespeare's most famous supernatural suspense-thriller of all time kept me quite literally bewitched and gave me an unforgettable experience!

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