A new production of the Scottish play kicks off the 2010 season at Shakespeare’s Globe.

When three witches tell the general Macbeth that he is destined to occupy the throne of Scotland, he and his wife choose to become the instruments of their fate and kil the first man to stand in their path, the virtuous King Duncan. But to maintain his position, Macbeth must keep on killing; at first Banquo, his old comrade-in-arms, and later, as the atmosphere of guilt and paranoia thickens, anyone who seems a threat to the tyrant and his fear.

From its first moments to the last fulfilment of the witches’ prophecy, Shakespeare’s gripping account of the psychological experience of murder enthralls the imagination. In scenes of nightmarish vividness and language of haunting power, Macbeth represents the profoundest engagement with the forces of evil in all drama.

Macbeth stars Elliot Cowan in the title role. Cowan has previously been seen in the West End in A Streetcar Named Desire and Frost/Nixon at the Donmar Warehouse and The Revenger’s Tragedy at the National Theatre. His screen work includes The Ruby In The Smoke and Lost In Austen.

Lucy Bailey, who previously directed acclaimed stagings of Titus Andronicus and Timon Of Athens at the Globe, returns to direct Macbeth, which she sets in the primitive, violent climate of 11th century Scotland.

For more about Macbeth read the First Night Feature.

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