Macbeth Character assessment Essay

Published: 2020-04-22 15:24:05
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The 3 witches have told Macbeth that he will become king. He tells this news to his wife, Lady Macbeth . She starts plotting the murder of Duncan, the king of Scotland. A messenger then arrives at Dunsinane telling her that Duncan will be visiting them that evening. In this scene Macbeth kills Duncan.

Setting

This play takes place on stage. The play is set in 1600s in the Scottish Highlands. The stage is bare apart from a bench, a bucket and well, there is a backdrop of the castle at the rear of the stage.

Character Profiles

Macbeth

Stunned at what he has just done

Angry with both himself and Lady Macbeth

Becomes quite hysterical

Pure shock

Lady Macbeth

Evil voice

Devious

Cunning

Calm throughout

4th witch

very clever & Very evil

A soft blue light falls onto the stage with a white spot light on Lady Macbeth, the light including spot light turns green during Lady Macbeths speech.

Lady Macbeth sits on bench at stage rear holding a pure black cat.

(A black cat is connected with witches, Lady Macbeth is the 4th witch).

Lady Macbeth starts to say her speech in an evil, cold, powerful, crackle of a voice. Here she will be talking to her cat rather than herself.

Here she talks of the fatal bellman, this signifies death.

An organ is playing in the background (organs are played at funerals, and signify death, a murder has just taken place).

Macbeth backs onto the stage very slowly almost in a trance.

He turns to face Lady Macbeth

I have done the deed. saying this like in complete shock but realisation as much to himself as to Lady Macbeth.

Macbeth: Did though not hear a noise?

Lady Macbeth: The owl scream and the crickets cry (Elizabethans would know

These things represented

Death)

Lady Macbeth: Did thou not speak?

Quick, Macbeth: When?

Panicky, Lady Macbeth: Now.

Shows Macbeth: As I descended?

Nerves, Lady Macbeth: Ay.

and. Macbeth: Hark!

tension Who lies in the 2nd chamber?

Lady Macbeth: Donalbain

Macbeth: This is a sorry sight! (angry, shouting, he sees the blood).

Lady Macbeth: A foolish thought to say (trying to calm him whilst putting her cat

Down).

Macbeth is now slumped on the floor with his head in his hands saying lines 21-25. Remaining slumped he says lines 26-30, but this time in a whisper.

In these lines Macbeth talks about sleep. Only innocence is allowed to sleep, Macbeth cannot sleep anymore, for he is now evil. Macbeth shall sleep no more! Macbeth also talks about not being able to say amen, this is because he is no longer holy.

Lady Macbeth stands to his right looking down on him, this shows her power over him. She says Consider it not so deeply. In an impatient, and almost dismissive voice.

Macbeth: Sleep no more Macbeth does murder sleep!

Lady Macbeth: Why have you got these daggers? They must rest by

Duncan.

Lady Macbeth grabs the daggers.

Macbeth is afraid to go back to Duncans chamber, for he cannot bear to look at what he has done.

If Duncan do bleed then I shall place the daggers in the arms of the

guards, for it will seem their guilt! she says this in an evil yet

excited whisper. Exits stage left, running.

Her evil and cunning

nature has now been fully exposed to the audience.

(A loud knocking is heard, the knocking comes from speakers all around the theatre, so the audience is surrounded by the knocking).

Macbeth: Is in complete hysteria cries line 59-60. The blood is represented by long red ribbons attached to his finger tips and his clothes. He walks over to the well and tries to wash the blood from his hands. All Neptunes great oceans could not wash these hands clean. Neptune is God of water, so here Macbeth is saying all the water in the world could not wash the blood away. I think he was trying to wash away his crime and his guilt by getting rid of the blood, as this was just a visual reminder of the wrong he had done. He pretends to throw the blood stained water over the floor.

A watery red light appears on the stage floor rippling with waves.

Lady Macbeth appears back on stage with her hands out in front of her, her hands and clothing are soaked with blood (red ribbons). She holds her hands up to Macbeths face, he turns away from her. She starts to speak in an evil, cold, and angry voice my hands are of your colour , but I shame to wear a heart so white.

The knocking starts again.

Lady Mabeth spins around in a sudden panic, I hear knocking! Lady Macbeth says the rest of her speech in the same quick startled tone. This is the only time in the scene where LM shows her nerves.

Macbeth in complete hysteria with tears running down his cheeks Wake Duncan with your knocking, I would thou couldst! At this point Ms weakness is most apparent, at this point I feel that he would be ready to confess all.

Lady Macbeth and Macbeth exit stage right.

Lady Macbeth now calm again, strides off confidently.

Macbeth crawls off on his hands and knees.

This shows the difference between Macbeth and Lady Macbeth, Macbeth is remorseful, guilt ridden and hysterical with disbelief. Lady Macbeth on the other hand is confident, calm, excited, and seems completely unfazed by the fact that she has helped murder her king. Her power over him is enormous, and makes you wonder whether Macbeth was in a trance to even be able to comprehend killing his king let alone actually doing it.

At the end of the scene the lights suddenly go out the theatre is pitch black.

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