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Macbeth - Scenes like Act 4 Scene 1 can be staged and viewed in many different ways.

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Introduction

MACBETH Scenes like Act 4 Scene 1 can be staged and viewed in many different ways. When Macbeth enters he says: "How now, you secret, black, and midnight hags" (Macbeth: Act 4 Scene 1, lines 47-48; by William Shakespeare) The director could make the actor say it as though he appears very confidant and his tone of voice ordering, or he could say it as though he is very unconfident and fearful. The whole of this scene can be viewed in different ways. At the beginning of the play, even before we have seen Macbeth, he has been talked of. We hear that he is a brave and loyal man. We hear from the king that Macbeth is brave and noble. Duncan says: "What he hath lost, noble Macbeth has won" (Act 1 Scene 2, line 67) And the captain says: "For brave Macbeth - well he deserves that name" (Act 1 Scene 2, line 16) So at the beginning we get good first impressions of Macbeth, but this changes after he meets the witches. Macbeth bumps into three witches, who give him three predictions. When Macbeth first meets the witches, in Act 1 Scene 3, he seems calm and says or does nothing, which shows fear. When he is given the predictions, he wants to hear more and believes them because he likes the idea of being king - he is ambitious. The evidence for this is stated in Act 1 Scene 3 where Macbeth says: "Stay, you imperfect speakers. Tell me more." ...read more.

Middle

In all three versions the witches have been dressed in very little clothes, if any. They have been dressed in dirty, old rags. The witches don't wear normal clothes as humans do, they don't follow convention, and they are not human. I would obviously do the same; I would make the witches look as much inhumane as possible, I would try and make them look as outcasts, as they are nothing like the humans, they are not good. This is why dressing Macbeth in the same coloured clothes as the witches is a good idea because it shows that he is moving towards the path of evil. In the beginning of Act 4 Scene 1 the witches are making a potion, throwing in gruesome ingredients, and whilst doing so, they chant rhymed spells. The impact, which the rhymed spells that the witches chant have on us, is that they remind us that the witches are supernatural. It is mysterious, and because it is rhymed it helps the audience remember what has been put in the cauldron, it also makes the whole thing look more like an evil ritual. Whilst the witches are speaking their lines they could be walking around the cauldron, dropping in the ingredients as they say their lines. I think that if the witches were dancing around the cauldron it will have a more dramatic effect on the audience because it will again remind the audience that the witches are performing an evil ritual. In this part of the play the witches repeat the lines: "Double, double, toil and trouble. ...read more.

Conclusion

At the end of the scene, Macbeth commands: "Give to th'edge o'th' sword his wife, his babes, and all unfortunate souls that trace him in his line". (Act 4 Scene 1, lines 150-152) After listening to Macbeth saying this, the audience would see Macbeth as mad, selfish, stupid, foolish, and evil. This scene would have changed our view of Macbeth because he is taking advice from witches for the second time; he is going so that he can keep his position as king. The witches tell him to "beware Macduff" but they also say that no harm will come upon him until Burnim wood comes to Dunsinane hill, which he says is impossiable but just incase he will kill Macduff and his family, so he is going over the top and becoming selfish. In act 5 scene 5 Macbeth states: "Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player that struts and frets his hour upon the stage and than is herd no more. It is a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury signifying nothing". (Act 5 Scene 5, lines 23-27) This shows Macbeths attitude towards life - he thinks nothing of it. This is ironic, as these ideas link to act 4 Scene 1, because in this scene he will do anything to keep his life but he discards the lives of others without a thought. In my view a modern audience would see Macbeth as a tragic hero. I think the same as he was ruined by a group of witches. I think this because Macbeth was a strong and good man at one point Hammad Naveed ...read more.

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