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Home :: Archive :: 2000 :: September ::
Re: Doubling in Macbeth
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.1774  Thursday, 21 September 2000.

From:           Nicolas Pullin <
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Date:           Wednesday, 20 Sep 2000 12:14:20 -0500
Subject: Re: Doubling in Macbeth
Comment:        SHK 11.1765 Re: Doubling in Macbeth

In response to Don Bloom's condemnation of my suggestions regarding a
possible "dodging" of Banquo with Macduff and Banquo:

Yes, of course, I agree with you in terms of the complexity of the play,
that much is added by having the full cast list present when they are
"written" in.  But surely, you are not suggesting that this is the ONLY
way these plays can be performed?  Most modern productions do some
strange "dodging/doubling" with the witches and Seyton, and/or the
murderers, and many add a "da capo" coda of sorts by intimating some
continuance of the violence at play's end by adding Fleance to the final
tableau (eg. BBC series) who is not "required" or Donalbain (eg.
Polanski).

All I was suggesting was that in truly "experimental" forms of the play,
when the dramaturgy can be inverted or challenged (because it is so well
known) specific themes and interpretations can be highlighted.  The
image of the line of kings stretching to the edge of doom appears in Act
4--why not attempt to produce that line in different ways, since each
time Macbeth sees the crown as a possibility, he is immediately
confronted with a human hurdle, be it "Prince of Cumberland" or Banquo's
issue.  I am not saying this stages the full play--just that it is a
legitimate performance possibility.  I have seen it work.
 

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