Macbeth as a murderous conspiracy: Copp and his cast make it work.

artsblue 100x100By Pepper Parr

August 16th, 2018



Trevor Copp’s interpretation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth is not the way we heard the play in high school.

It is however a production well worth watching.

2018 audience

Summer outdoor theatre at its best.

There are some exceptionally good performances.

Lady Macbeth and Macbeth

Lady Macbeth arguing with Macbeth

Alma Sarai did a wonderful job as Lady Macbeth – the depth of her “out out” scene and the way in which she carried Macbeth off the stage in her arms was pure poetry and a demonstration of physical strength as well. DeSousa-Coelho who played Macbeth is not a man of small stature.

Copp has a core of experienced cast members that have ben a part of the RBG program for the past three years. My personal preference would have been to see Mika Hannigan as Macbeth – however Shawn DeSouza-Coelho did good work dealing with the mental emotional torment Macbeth was going through.

Kaylyn Valdez-Scott as was very good as Lady Macduff; she was a bright light to keep an eye on.

One could bank on the Banquo performance given by Jesse Horvath.

The murders - offing Duncan

Macbeth dispatches Duncan

Zach Parsons played Macduff and Malcolm very well.

Claudia Spadafora did a nice Ross – what we’ve not experienced with her before was the quality of her singing voice. It was a pleasant surprise .

The murderers reminded one of the way the Sûreté du Québec, that province’s provincial police service, has behaved in the past. It was sometimes hard to tell the difference in Quebec between the criminals and the police.

The choreography was the typical Copps work – he understands movement; the scene in which the murderers formed a chain of people stabbing one of their victims was brilliant.

Copp had a merry band of murders on stage who were very comfortable thrusting knives into almost anyone at hand or putting pistols to the heads of those they had to deal with and pulling the trigger. I lost count of just how many people were “offed” on that outdoor stage.

This second performance of the three week run went well; it was humid.

Outdoor theatre means coping with the weather – which is now climate in a constant state of change.

band of murderers

Some of the murderers having a drink after work.

The closing scene before intermission and the and the opening scene in the second half had everyone on the stage and involved in an operating room that was part Abu Ghraib and what we used to do at summer camp skits. Electric drills, tools that defied ones imagination were all part of a gruesome scene.

Hannigan dryly commented to Lady Macbeth that he was unable to help Macbeth: “he is beyond my practice”; this after he had taken every tool imaginable to “fix” Macbeth.

For those who make room for Shakespeare in their entertainment choices it is the language the draws us back again and again.

“Resolve thyself” … “filty witness” … the “bell that invites me” … “almost at odds with the morning”. There were people in the audience mouthing the words being said on the stage. “Let us make medicine of our revenge.”

Couple reading - flashlight

Reading a script during an intermission.

One patron said after the performance that “it took me a bit to get into it but I soon found myself feeling very emotional.

During the intermission one couple, using a flashlight to read a script they had were debating the wording and thoroughly enjoying themselves.

The play runs again on Friday and then Monday to Friday the week of the 20th and the week of the 27th.

There are no performances on Saturday or Sunday.



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