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Lady Macbeth

September 28, 2003 | Lisa Fung
When Britain's Eddie Izzard made his Broadway debut this year in "A Day in the Death of Joe Egg," he surprised many with his dramatic turn in the Peter Nichols play about a couple coping with a severely disabled child. He also received strong reviews and a Tony nomination for the role, which he earlier played in London. Not bad for a man who made a name for himself as a cross-dressing stand-up comic.
July 10, 2013 | By David Ng
Kenneth Branagh is back in Bard territory with a new production of Shakespeare's "Macbeth" that he stars in and co-directed with Rob Ashford at the Manchester International Festival in England. The production marks the first time Branagh has played the Scottish thane and is the actor's first Shakespearean stage role since he played "Richard III" in 2002. "Macbeth" is being performed in a deconsecrated church in the Manchester area. (Branagh-philes will recall that his 1995 comedy "A Midwinter's Tale" featured a production of "Hamlet"  set in an old English church .)
February 21, 1991 | NANCY CHURNIN
Was Lady Macbeth having an affair with Macduff? Was she trying to get herself pregnant before her biological clock finished ticking? And was that, perchance, why bloody Mr. Macbeth was a bit peeved at his fellow Scotsman? Those are the questions behind the American premiere of "Lady Macbeth," the newest co-production between the Gaslamp Quarter Theatre Company and the Ensemble Arts Theatre.
May 13, 2013 | By Charles McNulty, Times Theater Critic
Sometimes a performance is so finely adept that you forget the actor and see only the character. The dancer is inseparable from the dance, to borrow Yeats' timeless formulation. Glynn Turman's portrayal of Bynum in the stunning Mark Taper Forum revival of "Joe Turner's Come and Gone” is such a performance. Playing an older boardinghouse resident with clairvoyant vision and a penchant for old country magic, Turman makes this eccentric character seem so natural that it's as if he wandered into the theater from an open door backstage.
The 100th anniversary of Verdi's death on Jan. 27 is ready cause for most opera companies to perform, this season, at least one of the great Italian composer's more than two dozen operas. On the West Coast, Los Angeles Opera began its season with "Aida," San Diego Opera ends its season with "Aida" and San Francisco will have a June Verdi festival, with, as its centerpiece, "Aida.".
Double-talking witches, murder most foul, treachery and treason, guilt and madness. Shakespeare's bloody "Macbeth" may not seem like child's play, but fifth-graders at Edison Language Academy in Santa Monica would disagree. Their production of the dark tale, a rather unlikely class fund-raiser in February, so impressed members of the respected Pacific Resident Theatre in Venice that the young actors earned themselves a five-week theatrical run there. Yep, it's true: "Macbeth . . .
"Lady Macbeth," a new play by British playwright Jean Binnie, is a story of seduction. The seduction of Shakespeare's virtuous Macduff by Macbeth's ambitious wife. In Binnie's version of the "Macbeth" story, Lady Macbeth wants to get herself with child, a goal for which she sees the fertile Macduff to be more useful than her husband.
July 6, 2003 | William Logan
Each shudder takes the mattress by surprise, though guilt's hard pillow stares you in the face; the curtains whisper their beguiling lies, but sleep the soft eraser can't erase. The night pretends it has no word for me, I who have walked the corridors in fear of each new-murdered ghost's philosophy, of acts whose rumor echoes in my ear. Who when he sleeps is threatened by the real? The falling ladders seem to comprehend the fall of states; the nightmare robbers steal the dagger clenched within the sleeper's hand.
October 25, 2002 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
Knowledgeable opera-goers detest the applauding of sets. But Wednesday night was an exception to this bit of operatic etiquette. How not to give a hand to George Tsypin's slatted wooden, sculptural set for Shostakovich's "Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk" as soon as the curtain went up at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. Built by Los Angeles Opera in 10 frantic days, this handsome copy of the original Mariinsky Theatre set looked just fine, which meant, under the circumstances, it looked wonderful.
October 27, 2002 | Chris Pasles, Times Staff Writer
Stalin was no music critic, but he knew what he didn't like. It was 1936 and the Soviet dictator happened to see a Moscow production of Dmitri Shostakovich's opera "Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk." The gritty story of a woman trapped in a loveless marriage who murders her father-in-law and husband to pursue a love affair with one of their workers, "Lady Macbeth" had first been performed two years earlier, in Leningrad and Moscow, where critics and crowds alike had made it a hit.
April 14, 2013 | By Steven Zeitchik, Los Angeles Times
NEW YORK - Like world-class athletes, actors often measure their achievements by the degree of difficulty. Does a part require an unusual amount of range? An extraordinary number of man hours? Is it simply a matter of a chewy set of lines to get one's lips around? By all these standards, Alan Cumming would be an extreme-sports medalist. In a stage turn that will last nearly two hours, Cumming is set to play the part of Macbeth. Or, rather, the parts of Macbeth, as he tackles 15 roles from the Shakespearean tragedy, including the title character, Banquo, Duncan, Lady Macbeth and plenty of others (as well as, in a story that frames the performance, a disoriented mental patient reenacting the play)
April 10, 2013 | By Steven Zeitchik
Even by his hyphenate standards, Alan Cumming has been pretty busy lately. The Tony-winner and Emmy-nominee's role as slick campaign manager Eli Gold on "The Good Wife" continues to be meaty, with the series recently picked up for a fifth season. He's set to star in a one-man "Macbeth" that opens on Broadway later this month (more on that shortly). And now he has several film projects in the works. Cumming tells The Times that he's come aboard to star in "First-Class Man," the long-developed Roger Spottiswoode film about an Indian prodigy who makes the move from his native country to Cambridge, England.
March 21, 2013 | By Margaret Gray
If the title of Donald Freed's new play, now at the Skylight Theatre, doesn't prompt you to quote Macbeth (“Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow…”), you are probably not its intended demographic. The heart of “Tomorrow” is three actors discussing and rehearsing scenes from the Shakespeare tragedy. And, yes, it sounds dry and cerebral, like something only a dramaturge would be into. As I actually have a degree in dramaturgy, you might roll your eyes when I say I was on the edge of my seat as I watched the characters hunt Lady Macbeth's psychology through the text, history and their own pasts.
July 19, 2012 | By Margaret Gray
Meet the Macbeths, a charming, upwardly mobile couple grieving over the death of their only child. Director Jessica Kubzansky's interpretation of Shakespeare's “Macbeth,” currently on view in a satisfyingly foggy, bloody production by the Antaeus Company, opens with a funeral. Macbeth (Rob Nagle in the performance I saw; all the roles are double-cast) and his wife (Tessa Auberjonois) place a tiny shrouded body in a coffin, wordlessly but movingly communicating the couple's grief and mutual love.
November 18, 2009 | Robyn Dixon
The villages of Botswana are full of music. Gospel music. Choral music. The singsong repetitive music of rote classroom learning. But not opera, until now. As a small girl in the village of Ramotswa, Tshenolo Segokgo learned to sing in a church choir. She grew up and moved to the capital, Gabarone, for vocal lessons. Then one day in 2004, her music teacher put on an opera CD. "It felt like it was angels singing," she recalls. :: Five years later, on a purple African night, operatic strains rise from a white, corrugated-iron shed in the bush.
April 9, 2008 | Charles McNulty, Times Theater Critic
NEW YORK -- Patrick Stewart's suave performance in the Chichester Festival Theatre production of "Macbeth," which opened Tuesday at the Lyceum Theatre on Broadway, can be scored a triumph, but it comes with a few provisos. Hardly anyone ever gets this most tempting of Shakespearean roles right. By comparison, Hamlet, Othello and King Lear -- tough as they are to pull off -- are more amenable to partial successes. When actors fail in these parts, they tend to fail upward.
January 21, 1996 | Elysa Gardner, Elysa Gardner is a freelance writer based in New York
You would probably expect a woman who lists Mary Magdalene and Lady Macbeth among her role models to harbor some serious femme fatale fantasies. And if that woman is as intense as Tori Amos, you would expect her to relate those fantasies in a colorful fashion. Discussing her new Atlantic Records album, "Boys for Pele," over dinner in a mid-town Manhattan restaurant, Amos doesn't disappoint.
March 3, 1987 | Arts and entertainment reports from The Times, national and international news services and the nation's press
Opera singer Shirley Verrett's Rome debut as Lady Macbeth ended in boos and jeers after she was forced to quit in the first act because of a throat ailment. The performance Sunday at Rome's Teatro dell'Opera ended with spectators shouting for their money back. The audience grew boisterous, and conductor Giuseppe Patane stopped the show and called for quiet. After Verrett struggled through a duet with Renato Bruson, the audience protested again and the show was canceled.
February 11, 2008 | Peter Marks, Washington Post
RED BANK, N.J. -- For a guy who gets paid plenty not to talk, Teller -- the silent half of the magic team Penn & Teller -- puts a lot of stock in the importance of words. Or at least that's the impression he gives when immersed in the job of directing Shakespeare. Yes, you heard right.
December 4, 2007 | Mark Swed, Times Staff Writer
Stravinsky's "The Rake's Progress" -- clever, superficial, well sung -- has gone Hollywood. Verdi's "Macbeth" -- goofy, important, brilliantly sung -- has gone wherever it is that a battered old lime-green portable typewriter can pretend significance. These were two new San Francisco Opera productions on view over the weekend. The Gockley years have begun. When David Gockley took over the company last season, this opera-infatuated city breathed a sigh of relief.
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