Macbeth | Chicago Shakespeare Theater | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader
This is a past event.
When: Tuesdays-Sundays. Continues through March 8 2009
Price: $44-$70
Barbara Gaines's version of the Scottish play works wonderfully at the linguistic level. You're unlikely to hear Shakespeare's lines spoken with more ease—or greater sensitivity to both their plain and implicit meanings—than they are here, by a cast of accomplished pros. But the rest of the production is loaded down with more useless junk than a G.I. Joe deluxe set. Gaines updates the tale of a warlord destroyed by ambition, placing it in a first-world present that allows for Kevlar-vested soldiers and exotic dancers in black vinyl short-shorts. She also techs it up with lots of video projections, and pushes it toward Grand Guignol by—among other things—hanging murder victims from the flies like so many sides of beef. A very few of these devices work, as when Lady Macbeth's bad dreams are projected kaleidoscopically on her white nightgown. But most don't, and the result is a silly show that diminishes a masterwork. —Tony Adler



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