Get our free email newsletter with just one click

Macbeth review at Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury – ‘a skilful in-house production’

The cast of Macbeth at Theatre Severn The cast of Macbeth at Theatre Severn
by -

Shrewsbury’s Theatre Severn has taken the brave step of mounting its first in-house production. It has temporarily converted the intimate Walker studio theatre into an in-the-round space for the purpose, allowing its audience to get up close to the action. It would have been so much easier to have opted for one of the comedies, so the producers deserve credit for staging one of Shakespeare’s tragedies.

There are some memorable moments in Loveday Ingram’s production, not least the scene involving Banquo’s ghost, in which the ill-fated nobleman, played by Dave Fishley, is encased in a glass coffin that transforms into a banqueting table. Charlie Morgan Jones’ lighting allows the body to be seen by Macbeth (and the audience) only to disappear again. It’s quite breathtaking.

The fight scenes are also finely executed. But there’s still a sense of this being a toe-in-the-water operation for the theatre, hopefully paving the way for more home-grown productions.

Ingram certainly doesn’t go over the top. She invests Jane Gurnett’s Lady Macbeth with less power-crazed ruthlessness than is usually the case, while Patrick Robinson’s is a robust Macbeth. The Witches are not as effective as they might be though – except when they pull faces at the audience.

As a first in-house production, with a cast of talented amateur performers working with eight professionals, this is a wonderfully encouraging start. It’s to be hoped that this is the first of many from Theatre Severn.

We need your help…

When you subscribe to The Stage, you’re investing in our journalism. And our journalism is invested in supporting theatre and the performing arts.

The Stage is a family business, operated by the same family since we were founded in 1880. We do not receive government funding. We are not owned by a large corporation. Our editorial is not dictated by ticket sales.

We are fully independent, but this means we rely on revenue from readers to survive.

Help us continue to report on great work across the UK, champion new talent and keep up our investigative journalism that holds the powerful to account. Your subscription helps ensure our journalism can continue.

Subscribers to The Stage get 10% off The Stage Tickets’ price
Theatre Severn’s measured and skilful first in-house production