Arts & Entertainment


From its first performance in 1606, Macbeth has been plagued by misfortune. Supposedly a curse of the dark arts punishing Shakespeare for reproducing verbatim certain deathly incantations, actors previously daring to take the stage have suffered burns, stabs, falls, fevers, riots, heart attacks, suicides and mysterious deaths. The Sydney Theatre Company’s latest staging Vs Macbeth – in collaboration with The Border Project – capitalises on this ill-fated history, weaving accidents and mishaps throughout the show. It is a performance that, dare I say it, has something for everyone. The Shakespeare itself is brilliant, dramatic, poetic and tense. In line with their purported aim of reconnecting a generation removed from traditional theatre, however, there’s much more to Vs Macbeth than just Shakespeare. The play is peppered with music, video art, slapstick, comedy, creating breaks in the hermetic world in which the action takes place. The result is genius, as funny, self-aware and dramatic as Dave Eggers could ever hope to be. The cast, made up of Border Project members and STC Residents, is commendable, Cameron Goodall as Macbeth delivering a particularly dynamic performance as he descends into the madness of power. If you’re still holding a high-school grudge against the Bard, it’s time to forget it. Vs Macbeth is here to show us just how modern Shakespeare can be. Just don’t mention the name of the play.

Mar 20-Apr 3rd, Wharf 2, Sydney Theatre Company, $25-40, 9250 1777,

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