Macbeth, Virginia Adams

Macbeth, in its essence, presents a tale of hubris, avarice, and a fall from grace, instigated and encouraged by a supernatural presence. The Davidson College performance of this tragedy emphasized the latter’s role in the progression of the narrative through the omnipresence of the witches on the stage, even when not scripted by Shakespeare himself. This interpretation constructs the witches as the architects of the murders and fights occurring, as opposed to framing Macbeth as a victim to his own humanity, and marks a contrast from the other theatrical interpretation I have seen from the Richmond Shakespeare Company (summer 2018). This other production utilized the witches more as an indicator of the actions other characters undertook than as a catalyst. Nonetheless, the divergence between these two interpretations, through constructing a contradiction between human nature and divine intervention, displays how neither force manifests itself as mutually exclusive in executing the order of events and rather illustrates their interdependence.

Literary interpretations aside, this campus event provided an incredible spectacle of staging, especially within the incredible choreography of the fight scenes. Furthermore, the players used the set with its minimalist appearance so elaborately. The delivery of the letters through the trapdoor especially stands out as an exemplar of the creativity that manipulated space to focus the audience’s attention on the characters and their actions while simultaneously continuing to spark interest. The set remains only representative, nonetheless, of the brilliance both of those acting and those constructing the presentation of this challenge to humanity.

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