NUTS Review: Macbeth

As a huge fan of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, NUTS had a lot to live up to. However, I was surprised by how professional the whole thing was. For the most part, the acting was of a standard that I would expect of a professional company putting on the play and the set was intelligently designed despite the space NUTS had to work with.

The space was small yet intimate with seating on both sides of the stage and I felt almost as though I was on stage with the characters. A particular mention should go to the actor playing Macbeth who succeeded in making me laugh at some points and make my hair stand up on the back of my neck at others. Utterly fantastic.

‘I felt almost as though I was on stage with the characters’

NUTS made the decision to pretty much stick to the original script, with a few changes including a cracking dance scene and rather harrowing torture scene. Although neither of these fitted in with play, the acting was brilliant and it provided a few laughs for the audience.

The time period when the play was meant to be set was unfortunately a little bit unclear. I understood that it was during or after a war, maybe WWII, but it didn’t really seem to tie in with the play and left a few people confused. The characters were often seen drinking and smoking which I assumed was significant or symbolic of something but I couldn’t quite work out what it was.

The decision to change some of the characters’ genders was peculiar. Banquo and Duncan were both changed to female characters which I feel altered the dynamic of the play somewhat. Although it wasn’t necessarily in a bad way, it definitely added something different.

There is no denying the special place that Macbeth holds in the Shakespearian canon so they had a big job on their hands, but NUTS pulled it off spectacularly so round of applause to them.   

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