Thursday, June 29, 2006

"Shockingly persuasive"

The first press review is in! Newsday jumps the gun with this absolutely glowing review of last Friday's preview.

... How thrilling to declare that the curse is off: The "Macbeth" that opened the Public Theater's free Shakespeare-in-the-Park season last night is gripping and elegant, and flies like the wind, even in the muggiest early-summer weather.

Its nerve center is Liev Schreiber, simultaneously debonaire and heartsick, adding to our growing conviction that this actor can do anything he pleases with intelligence and whatever trumps "star quality" in our trash culture. With a large, stylish cast including Jennifer Ehle as a shockingly persuasive Lady Macbeth, Mois├ęs Kaufman's production is poetically lucid and driven by danger: At last, a "Macbeth" for grown-ups.
These are smart, fashionable people destroyed by ego and prophecy, not manipulative historic thugs who talk pretty. Michael Krass has dressed them accordingly, in incisively cut uniforms and tuxedos, modern-looking despite the swords and daggers. In her first scene, Ehle - with a golden wig of finger-wave curls and a well-turned everyday dress - suggests the seductive Faye Dunaway in a rich man's version of "Bonnie and Clyde."
His Lady, for all her gory ambition, is no pushy shrew. Her sleepwalking scene bodes not just guilt, but also idealism lost. ...

Click to see the big scary version of this.

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