About the film
The Metropolitan Opera – Verdi : Macbeth
Release Date: April 13, 2008
|Production Companies||:||The Metropolitan Opera, EMI|
|Producers||:||Peter Gelb, Louisa Briccetti, Mia Bongiovanni, Victoria Warivonchik, Elena Park|
|Writers||:||William Shakespeare, Francesco Maria Piave, Andrea Maffei|
Verdi’s admiration for Shakespeare led to such masterpieces as Othello and Falstaff, and if the earlier Macbeth isn’t on their exalted level it’s still a powerfully dramatic opera that hews closely to the original’s story line. The MET’s production retains the dark aura of the opera while updating it to a vaguely post-modern context. So the witches are bag ladies in various stages of decrepitude, with children in tow. The Banquet Scene features lowered chandeliers, a plethora of chairs, and a slew of extras dressed in tuxedos and party gowns. Macbeth sports a leather coat, the soldiers are in drab brown uniforms and seem to have fingers on their triggers even when they’re supposed to be in non-threatening situations. Director Adrian Noble also has Lady Macbeth do an inordinate amount of writhing around and singing from a lying-down position, adding to the feeling that a less interventionist directorial hand might have generated more impact.