Macbeth begins murderous rampage tonight

Press Release – Pop-Up Globe

“Flawless” NZ Herald
“A cultural phenomena” Stuff
“It’s 5 stars” The Daily Blog
“The cast are all exceptional” Keeping Up With NZ

Pop-up Globe will become a house of horrors as of tonight when blood starts dripping from the theatre to mark the opening of Shakespeare’s most brutal play, Macbeth.

Motorists on the Southern Motorway along with hundreds of people attending tonight’s gala performance will see blood ooze out of the 15th century replica building, thanks to digital wizardry of Perceptual Engineering — a company that specialises in visual and projection effects, whose past creations have included Pleasuredome, Rugby World Cup opening ceremony and Evil Dead. Blood will continue to flow until 4 March.

For those who are squeamish, they needn’t feel like they’ve missed out on this visual feast. The spectacular will be replicated on the outer walls of Pop-up Globe at Ellerslie Racecourse for The Merchant of Venice and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. It will rain ducats for Merchant and the theatre will slowly be covered in vines for Dream.

A VIP list of guests will attend tonight’s performance of Macbeth, starring one of New Zealand’s most experienced and prolific actors Stephen Lovatt and former Shortland Street actor Amanda Billing as the tyrant and his evil wife.

The cast also features Jess Holly-Bates (Shortland Street, Eve Reston; Nothing Trivial, Shay); Julia Guthrey (Guys ‘n’ Dolls, Dick Whittington & His Cat (UK tour), The Merry Wives Windsor (UK Outdoor Shakespeare tour)) and Romy Hooper (Shortland Street, Gemma Jansen; Nothing Trivial, Courtney) as witches; Greg Johnson (The End of the Golden Weather, Shortland Street, Outrageous Fortune and Go Girls) as Duncan; and Matu Ngaropo (The Lion King – Australian Tour, The Māori Troilus and Cressida – International Festival of the Arts /Globe Theatre London) as Macduff. For full cast, click here.

A haunting and timeless tragedy that explores the darkest corners of the human mind set in a world where the supernatural is real and the quickest way to the top is by murder. Macbeth, presented by Pop-up Globe’s mixed Southampton’s Company sees darkness, chaos and conflict unfold.

Honoured for his heroic exploits defending Scotland from invasion and rebellion, Macbeth’s world is overturned when three witches prophesy that, amongst his future fortunes, he will one day become king.

Uncertain if they are being manipulated by supernatural forces or just fulfilling their natural destiny, Macbeth and his ambitious wife choose action over indecision – but murder is just the beginning of their descent into darkness, and holding onto power could end up costing them their sanity and their souls …

Shakespeare’s sublime exploration of ambition and the darkest depths of the human psyche, Macbeth is his most haunting and timeless tragedy.

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