Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Macbeth Dramaturgy: Mark Bruce @ Wilton's Music Hall

Winner of the 2014 South Bank Sky Arts Award for Best Dance Production (Dracula)

A striking dance/theatre re-imagining of Shakespeare’s tragic tale of power, corruption, murder
UK tour: January 25th-May 12th
including 3 weeks at Wilton’s Music Hall

The multi-award-winning MARK BRUCE COMPANY will tour their haunting new dance/theatre re-imagining of Shakespeare’s Macbeth’ in 2018. 

With direction and choreography by visionary artistic
director Mark Bruce, a cast of nine outstanding performers and dramatic design by the same creative team behind Dracula and The Odyssey, Mark Bruce Company’s Macbeth’ will realise a beautifully harrowing vision of an internal wasteland formed from the pursuit of power through ruthless means. 
Drama, dance and film audiences will be drawn to Bruce's imaginative vision of the treacherous Macbeths' (Jonathan Goddard, Eleanor Duval left, photo by Nicole Guarino) toxic world of jealousy, ambition and corruption. Set in a supernatural and brutal underworld, both tragic and beautiful, with a horror film atmosphere of menace and murder ... all of this will be packed into Bruce's new production.

What was the inspiration for this performance?
Everything in the play - how it confronts us with the demons inherent in our nature. Its tragic beauty, symbolism, the supernatural ‘in-between’ world it evokes and sets its story in.

How did you become interested in making performance?
It just happened, I don’t remember a catalyst or a moment, it just bled out of creativity and ways of communication

Is there any particular approach to the making of the show?
I use an amalgamation of approaches - possibly hybrid - I started a company so I could build work with no rules or dividing lines between mediums and approaches.

Does the show fit with your usual productions?
Every show is a progression and a tangent.

What do you hope that the audience will experience?
It should creep inside them and shift things around.

MACBETH’ tour dates:
January 25th-27th           Frome, Merlin Theatre         www.merlintheatre.co.uk
Jan 31st-Feb 1st                     Winchester, Theatre Royal     www.theatreroyalwinchester.co.uk
February 8th, 9th            Birmingham, DanceXchange        www.dancexchange.org.uk
February 23rd to March 17th      London, Wilton’s Music Hall    www.wiltons.org.uk
March 23rd 24th             Ipswich, Dance East            www.danceeast.co.uk
April 17th, 18th                      Blackpool, The Grand         www.blackpoolgrand.co.uk
May 1st, 2nd                   Exeter, Northcott Theatre        www.exeternorthcott.co.uk
May 10th-12th                Salisbury Playhouse            www.salisburyplayhouse.com
May 17th 18th                Milton Keynes, Stantonbury Theatre www.stantonburytheatre.co.uk
Publicity:                      judy.lipsey@premiercomms.com

Performers:  Eleanor Duval, Jonathan Goddard, Jordi Calpe-Serrats, Christopher Thomas, Daisy West, Dominic Rocca, Hannah McGlashon, Steven Berkeley-White, Carina Howard.

Choreographer/director:           Mark Bruce
Set design:    
Philip Eddolls
Lighting design:                         Guy Hoare
Costume design:                
Dorothée Brodrück

Artistic Director Mark Bruce: 
Macbeth hits you fast, cuts through to the bone, and for me it is the least ambiguous of Shakespeare's plays. Its darkness opens our nightmares; we recognise fundamental traits inside ourselves and the consequences of acting upon them. The vicious pursuit of power to fill a void will always be relevant - the Macbeths are everywhere in every age, because they are a part of us.

“I first read Macbeth as a teenager and returning to it now the images, atmosphere it evokes have not changed. Its power lies in a relentless tale of supernatural horror told with a beauty and symbolism that reaches to the tragic state of the ‘other’.   The supernatural is always present in Macbeth, bending our own thoughts and perceptions as well as those of the protagonists. It infects us, always one step ahead, and Macbeth’s decisions are made in the world of a nightmare as if there is no separation between thought and action. Murder is done and descent is rapid.

“The Macbeths are mere playthings of the evil they set free, and in the madness and emptiness that ensues they become but walking shadows, or, as in my adaptation, simply clowns of sound and fury.”

Mark Bruce Company has built up a formidable reputation for uncompromising dance-theatre work.  Early MBC productions include Moonlight Drive (1991), Lovesick (1995), Helen, Angel (1996), Horse (1998), Dive (1999) and At Louse Point (1997) with Polly Jean Harvey and John Parish. Mark Bruce has made work for other companies including Fever to Tell (2005) and The Sky or a Bird (2008) for Probe, Stars for Dance South West, Green Apples for the ROH’s Clore Studio Summer Collection, Bad History for the Place Prize 2006, Crimes of Passion (2010) and Medea (2011) for Bern Ballet.  MBC’s more recent productions include Sea of Bones (2007), Love and War (2010) which opened at the Bristol Tobacco Factory, Made In Heaven (2012), the award-winning Dracula (2013, 2014), and The Odyssey (2016). 

In 2014 Dracula scooped four major awards:

South Bank Sky Arts Award for Best Dance Production
        Critics’ Circle Award Dance Section for Best Independent Company
        Dancing Times Award for Best Male Dancer (Modern) – Jonathan Goddard for ‘Dracula’
        Dancing Times Award for Best Male Dance – Jonathan Goddard for Mark Bruce Company

Mark co-devised Skellig (2008), an opera based on the book by David Almond, for the Sage Gateshead; the Royal Exchange Theatre’s productions of The Bacchae, Antigone, The Glass Menagerie, The Revenger’s Tragedy, Antony & Cleopatra, Peer Gynt, As You Like It, Fast Food, Still Time and The Way of the World. He directed Rick Bland’s award-winning Thick which toured the UK, US and Canada and in 2015 worked with Singapore Repertory Theatre on their production of The Tempest.  Mark has also worked in a variety of new media, screen and interactive stage productions with Ruth Gibson & Bruno Martelli of Igloo. He has written music for his own work and for art installations and is published by Mute Song. His book of short stories, Blackout Zones was released in May 2010. Mark is currently completing his book on Choreography and Making Dance Theatre.

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