Verdi’s Bicentennial Celebration: Macbeth in Copenhagen

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THE ROYAL DANISH THEATER PRESENTS:

Thrills, chills, murder and power struggles permeate Macbeth, the story of two alpha types who destroy everything around them in order to realise their ambitions. Verdi was deeply absorbed by Shakespeare throughout his life, and Macbeth was his very first Shakespeare-based opera.

Three witches predict that Macbeth will become king of Scotland. Propelled by Lady Macbeth, he seizes the throne by eliminating his rivals. But blood proves difficult to wash from the hands and justice triumphs at last: Lady Macbeth goes insane and dies, and Macbeth himself is killed in battle.

In the title role is baritone Dario Solari from Uruguay, who has made a brilliant career in Europe and the USA, and the Royal Danish Opera’s own John Lundgren – a master at creating mordantly evil portraits of the most dubious characters from the world of opera.

Macbeth receives stage direction from Australian theatre director Benedict Andrews, whose prize-winning marathon staging of Shakespeare’s historical drama, The War of the Roses, constitutes a first-class springboard for Verdi’s interpretation of the blood-soaked tragedy, Macbeth.

The Royal Danish Theatre celebrates the Giuseppe Verdi bicentennial and the 450th anniversary of William Shakespeare.

Macbeth is performed in Italian with Danish supertitles.

The Royal Danish Theatre wishes to thank the A.P. Møller and Chastine McKinney Møller Foundation whose generous grant has enabled the staging of Macbeth. The Danish Research Foundation is the principal sponsor of the Royal Danish Opera.


FALSTAFF   OTELLO

Cast

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    Otello
    Der Fliegende Holländer
    John Lundgren
    Macbeth
  • Read more … Performances:
    Macbeth
    Dario Solari
    Macbeth
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    Macbeth
    Cavalleria Rusticana & Bajadser
    Madama Butterfly – A Chamber Opera | On Tour
    Anne Margrethe Dahl
    Lady Macbeth
  • Read more … Performances:
    Macbeth
    Arutjun Kotchinian
    Banquo
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    Macbeth
    Otello
    Don Giovanni | On Tour
    Don Giovanni
    Henning von Schulman
    Banquo
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    Macbeth
    Otello
    Cavalleria Rusticana & Bajadser
    Der Fliegende Holländer
    Michael Kristensen
    Macduff
  • Read more … Performances:
    Macbeth
    Rusalka
    Madama Butterfly – A Chamber Opera | On Tour
    The Old Maid and the Thief
    Elisabeth Halling
    Lady Macbeths companion
 
Cast dates
 

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Macbeth:
Dario Solari
14/11, 17/11, 20/11, 24/11, 27/11, 11/12

John Lundgren
29/11, 2/12, 4/12, 9/12

Lady Macbeth:
Anne Margrethe Dahl
14/11, 17/11, 20/11, 24/11, 27/11, 29/11, 2/12, 4/12, 9/12, 11/12

Banquo:
Autjun Kotchinian
14/11, 17/11, 20/11, 27/11, 2/12, 4/12

Henning von Schulman
24/11, 29/11, 9/12, 11/12

Lady-in-waiting to Lady Macbeth:
Elisabeth Halling
14/11, 17/11, 20/11, 24/11, 27/11, 29/11, 2/12, 4/12, 9/12, 11/12

Macduff:
Michael Kristensen 
14/11, 17/11, 20/11, 24/11, 27/11, 29/11, 2/12, 4/12, 9/12, 11/12

Malcolm
:
Peter Steen Andersen
14/11, 17/11, 20/11, 24/11, 27/11, 29/11, 2/12, 4/12, 9/12, 11/12

Duncan:
Sten Tulinius:
14/11, 17/11, 20/11, 24/11, 27/11, 29/11, 2/12, 4/12, 9/12, 11/12

Fleance:
Mathias Benjamin Markvardsen
14/11, 20/11, 27/11, 2/12, 9/12

Oscar la Cour Bødtcher-Jensen
17/11, 24/11, 29/11, 4/12, 11/12

A Doctor:
Florian Plock
14/11, 17/11, 20/11, 24/11, 27/11, 29/11, 2/12, 4/12, 9/12, 11/12

A Murderer:
Lasse Bach
14/11, 24/11, 29/11, 4/12, 11/12

Hans Lawaetz
17/11, 20/11, 27/11, 2/12, 9/12

A Herald:
Rudi Sisseck
14/11, 20/11, 27/11, 2/12, 9/12

Torben Demstrup
17/11, 24/11, 29/11, 4/12, 11/12

A Servant of Macbeth:
Simon Schelling
17/11, 24/11, 29/11, 4/12, 11/12

Morten Lassenius Kramp
14/11, 20/11, 27/11, 2/12, 9/12

First Apparition:
Jens Bruno Hansen
14/11, 20/11, 27/11, 2/12, 9/12

Uffe Henriksen
17/11, 24/11, 29/11, 4/12, 11/12

Second Apparition:
Al-Fadl Salem
17/11, 24/11, 29/11, 4/12 og 11/12

William Rasmussen
14/11, 20/11, 27/11, 2/12 og 9/12

Third Apparition:
Mathias Benjamin Markvardsen
14/11, 20/11, 27/11, 2/12, 9/12

Oscar la Cour Bødtcher-Jensen
17/11, 24/11, 29/11, 4/12, 11/12

Synopsis
 

macbethDenmark1  Macbeth_denmark2

Act I
In the dark of night, near a bloodied battlefield, a coven of witches are gathering. They have come with important news for the generals of the Scottish army – Macbeth and Banquo: In a vision they have seen a magnificent future for Macbeth, who will one day be Thane of Cawdor and King of Scotland. For Banquo they bring the news that he will be the father of kings, who will rule over the Scottish realm. As the witches disappear, Macbeth and Banquo are left alone with their astonishment; an astonishment, which becomes greater still, as a messenger arrives with news from the Scottish king: Macbeth has been made Thane of Cawdor and the first of the witches’ prophecies has come true.

macbethDenmark3   Macbeth_denmark4

A few days later at Macbeth’s castle, Lady Macbeth receives a letter from her husband containing the news of his ennoblement and the witches’ prophecies. When a messenger shortly thereafter brings news that Macbeth and the king are on their way to the castle, Lady Macbeth decides to take fate into her own hands. When Macbeth arrives, she tells him of her plan: King Duncan of Scotland must die by Macbeths own hand that very night. Macbeth does not approve of the plan, but he is persuaded and that same night, he kills the king as he sleeps. Afterwards he refused to smear the blood of the dead king onto the clothes of his sleeping guardsmen, so that they will be accused of the murder. This dark deed is consequently done by Lady Macbeth herself. A short while later, Banquo and the nobleman Macduff arrive and uncover the murder. Macbeth and Lady Macbeth join in the dismay at the death of their king, while the desperate guardsmen are arrested for their supposed deed.

Macbeth_denmark5  Macbeth_denmark6

Act II
Macbeth has been proclaimed King of Scotland. The second of the witches’ prophesies have come true, while the rightful heir – the murdered king’s son, Malcolm – has fled Scotland and accusations of having murdered his own father. But for Lady Macbeth all is still not well: The prophecy of Banquo becoming the father of kings worries her, and in her mind there is only one solution: Banquo and his son Fleance must die. Only then can she rest assured that the crown is secure. Macbeth again is not happy about her plan, but again he is persuaded and together they plan the murder.

Banquo and his son arrive for a celebration at Macbeth’s castle. Fleance is uneasy, but Banquo trusts Macbeth and thus walks straight into the arms of the assassins waiting for him outside the castle gates. As his father is murdered, Fleance manages to flee the scene.

Macbeth_denmark7  Macbeth_denmark8

In the castle Lady Macbeth, unaffected by her murderous plans are welcoming her guests. Macbeth receives the message that Banquo has been murdered, but just as he is about to feel a little more at ease, he is paralyzed with fear: His seat on the throne is suddenly taken by Banquo’s bloodied ghost! Terrified, Macbeth begs the ghost to go away while Lady Macbeth and the guest look on in amazement at the new king’s strange behaviour. Lady Macbeth manages to distract the guests, while Macbeth himself flees the hall in terror.

Macbeth_denmark9  Macbeth_denmark10

Act III
Beside himself with misgivings after the death of Banquo and unsure of what the future will bring, Macbeth seeks out the witches for more news. They bring forth three apparitions bringing new prophecies: The first bids him beware of Macduff. The second assures him that “no man of woman born” can harm him. The third assures him that he will be safe until the mighty Birnam Wood marches on his castle, Dunsinan.
Calmed by the apparations, Macbeth asks about the descendants of Banquo and is immediately confronted by another apparition: A procession of future kings, followed by the ghost of Banquo himself. Horrified by what he has seen, Macbeth collapses to the ground. As the witches disappear again, Lady Macbeth finds her husband lying lifeless on the ground. She revives him, and together they plan the murder of Macduff and his entire family.

Macbeth_denmark11  Macbeth_denmark12  Act IV
On the Scottish border, Macduff is gathering an army of fugitives from Macbeth’s tyranny. He is himself full of anger and sorrow for his wife and children, whom Macbeth has had murdered. Malcolm, the son of the late King Duncan, joins Macduff with an army of English soldiers. He intends to fight Macbeth and win back his rightful crown. The army seek shelter under the trees of Birnam Wood while they plan their attack. 

Macbeth_denmark13  Macbeth_denmark14  

In the castle Dunsinan, the Lady Macbeth is being haunted by remorse. In her dreams, she revisits the terrible murders she has ordered and unable to rest peacefully, she sleepwalks through the castle at night, trying to wash invisible blood from her hands.
In another room, Macbeth too is awake in the night. For him there is no rest either: Any minute he awaits the arrival of his enemies and he bitterly he realizes that when he is dead, he will only be remembered for his vile deeds. A servant brings him the news, that Lady Macbeth has taken her own life and that the castle guards are reporting strange tidings that the trees of Birnam Wood are moving towards the castle.

Macbeth_denmark15  Macbeth_denmark16

As Malcolm and Macduff arrive at the castle with their armies, Macbeth flings himself recklessly into the fight. Macbeth and Macduff meet in a vicious duel, where Macbeth taunts Macduff with the witches’ prophecy, that no man born of woman can hurt him. Macduff, however, retorts that he was cut out of his mother’s womb and therefore was not born naturally, upon which he kills Macbeth and proclaims Malcolm the rightful King of Scotland.

Macbeth_denmark17  Macbeth_denmark18

Macbeth_denmark19  Macbeth_denmark20

Macbeth_denmark21  Macbeth_denmark22

Macbeth_denmark23 Macbeth_denmark24 Macbeth_denmark25  Macbeth_denmark26  Macbeth_denmark27  Macbeth_denmark28Macbeth_denmark29  Macbeth_denmark30

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One Response to Verdi’s Bicentennial Celebration: Macbeth in Copenhagen

  1. Pingback: Macbeth, the power of evil and the evil of power. | We dream of things that never were and say: "Why not?"

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