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Macbeth review - Exeter Northcott

The Mark Bruce Dance Company at the Exeter Northcott, May 2018

By India Nye

How do you take a story that’s been done a thousand times before and change it into something brand new? Well, Mark Bruce does just this with his portrayal of Shakespeare’s Macbeth which is unlike any other. Telling the audience, the story of the infamous King through the medium of dance, you are gripped to your seat as you are shown a spectacle of conflict and power. While you don’t need to know the entire story of Macbeth, it would be helpful in understanding who the characters are and what their intentions are as well which sometimes became confusing but did not ruin the overall experience.

The choreography is incredible, it expertly shows the audience the detailed emotions the characters are feeling such Macbeth’s inner conflict. The chemistry between the Macbeths (John Goddard and Elena Duval) is extraordinary they encapsulated the tragic couple and show the audience the power struggle between the two perfectly. The group numbers are enthralling, by far the most exciting is the trio of witches (Daisy West, Hannah McGlashon and Carina Howard) who are just as intriguing as they are scary as they fling themselves around the stage in seizure-like moves that disturb yet entertain. These dances draw you in and allow you to be caught up in their spectacle, the fight scenes are choreographed by Mark Bruce himself. These dances are helped especially by a haunting score that drills your way into your head until your ears are ringing as well as the candle like lights that fill the stage giving the scenery a gothic look.

The show is impactful and at times horrifying. It is a much watch for mature audiences who love a tragic story of corruption and prophecy or for audiences who want to see something completely fresh and new.

This show continues its tour at the Salisbury Playhouse  on 10 May.

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