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Ethan Hawke in Macbeth


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Ethan Hawke is an extremely intelligent, thoughtful actor who thrives in Shakespeare. It should be worth seeing. Has anyone seen "The Winslow Boy". It's one of my favorite plays but I haven't seen a production of it in 30 years. The film version is superb. I'd love to hear about this production and in particular Roger Rees's performance as I unfortunately won't get a chance to see it.

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I saw this production last night. To be honest it's not really fair to be critical after the first previews but there were things I liked about this production and a few things I didn't. Audience response was positive but not overwhelming. the theater wasn't full and there were a lot of balcony seats empty. A few patrons bolted at intermission.

Voice amplification seems to be a problem. I had the greatest problem hearing Lady Macbeth, played by actress Anne Marie Duff. An accomplished actress, she just didn't do it for me.

The rest of the cast is very good. Ethan Hawke makes a fine Macbeth and his supporting cast including actors Daniel Sunjata (the hunk who bared all in Take Me Out) and Johnny Orsini (another studly actor who bared all in last season’s Nance with Nathan Lane) all provide a macho and testosterone filled stage. Costumes are interesting and Lady Macbeth looks like she stepped off a Marc Jacobs runway show. The men are garbed in what appears to be mid-nineteenth century frock, although the battle garb with bike boots, jeans, leather skirts and studs make it look like a Saturday night in a leather bar.

Special effects abound, so lots of strobes, fire and smoke. A minimal set.

Of note are the three witches and their entourage which look like characters from the underworld of Lord of the Rings. The witches are all male actors and it's a bit of fun to see them cackle around the stage.

But, this is Shakespeare and it requires a great deal of concentration from the audience to follow Shakespeare's words. There seems to be a great effort to retain the poetic beauty that exists in the text. I think with a few more performances under their belt, the cast will rise to the occasion.

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