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How I would interpret and stage the supernatural in 'Macbeth'

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Introduction

How I would interpret and stage the supernatural in 'Macbeth' Macbeth is a thrilling, tragic play written by William Shakespeare. Macbeth was written in the early sixteen hundreds, however the play is set in the early 11th century. The play was written in the Jacobean times, during this time King James the first wrote a book called 'Demonology'. This book was based on witchcraft, which was contemporary at the time. This could of inspired Shakespeare to incorporate the supernatural into Macbeth. The opening of Macbeth is very dramatic and theatrical. It opens with thunder and lightening this is visually arresting. In those days they would have used torches or candles to create the lightening and probably a sheet of metal, which they would shake to generate the illusion of thunder. However compared to the effects of today this is all very basic. In today's world lasers are used to produce the false impression of lightening. These modern methods of creating illusions are visually stimulating, but as the language in the sixteen hundreds is much more complex as it uses a lot of imagery; this can be mentally stimulating as it creates images in your mind you, which can be just as effective as new technology. You can see this when Lady Macbeth says. ...read more.

Middle

Banquo is right to mistrust them and he warns Macbeth when he says: "And oftentimes, to win us to our harm, The instruments of darkness tell us truths, Win us honest trifles, to betray's In deepest consequence" (Banquo Act 1 Scene 3 Line 124-127) This sums up exactly how the witches work they use people as instruments to manipulate them. Macbeth wants to know more about these preposterous comments made by the Witches, but all of a sudden they vanish. In Shakespearian times they would of used a trap door to create the effect of a disappearance. However today a trap door is still used. When the witches tell Macbeth about the future, it could have awoken or planted the seeds of evil within his soul. The word "murder" comes into his mind and "Horrible imaginings". However the witches cant guide him all the way to evil it will be up to himself and his wife. But he could still hope to be crowed he says, "Chance they crown me". As of Scottish succession, which could make him king because if all the royals who are in battle die in Scotland's war against Norway, he could be the last man standing this makes his crime double heinous. ...read more.

Conclusion

It was known that James 1st was crowned in the cradle, so the tree could be a family tree. Shakespeare would of stages these apparitions using just actors and props, for the armed head they could of used a fake head with armor on it, and for the other two apparitions they could of just used a real child and used make up to create the illusion of blood. However in the 21st century the effects you can create for this scene are overwhelming for the armed head its possible to have a real head floating in mid-air, this can be done using holograms. The same techniques could be used to create illusions for the rest of the apparitions. If I were to stage 'Macbeth' today I would make a film rather than a play doing this would enable me to input more special effects. I would go along the same route as Pulaski's version because I liked how he made one of the witches young and beautiful to echo the "Fair is foul" saying. After reading the play, I'm bewildered, how could a potential hero be so taken in, unless he wanted to be? I think from birth Macbeth had something evil in him that needed someone or something to trigger the evilness off, so I believe that the witches were the ones that pulled the trigger that resulted in the total destruction of Macbeth. ...read more.

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