What Shakespeare doesn’t want you to know, Dunsinane uncovers in a production that Marin Independent Journal calls “richly rewarding.” Marin Theatre Company’s renowned success with groundbreaking theatre is matched on stage with quick-witted humor that ignites laughter throughout the audience and revelatory character transformation woven through the action-packed battle scenes. Some characters’ names have been hidden from the press because the reveals made throughout the performance leave the audience breathless, as Shakespeare’s story of a Scottish tyrant is challenged, new information is revealed, and the people left in his wake fight for the highlands — and their lives.
Renowned Shakespearean actor and Bay Area favorite Aldo Billingslea delivers an unforgettable performance as the hero torn between war and peace, his voice and physicality married so beautifully with the text, his Siward passionately defines poetry in motion. Lisa Anne Porter, who we are allowed to say is Macbeth’s wife — known in factual history and in this play as Gruach — towers as Scotland’s Queen, bringing her warmth and believable warrior courage to the role of a challenged woman refusing to relinquish the throne. Featured performances by unforgettable characters light up the stage and twist the story at a moment’s notice. Josh Odsess-Rubin’s Malcolm delights in evil while providing “refreshing laughs and lightness” as mentioned by KWMR’s review of the production. Daniel Duque-Estrada and Michael Ray Wisely power the stage with nuance and exquisite execution of the text, drawing our attention and wonder to characters we’ve known but are delighted to re-learn. With stunning performances beyond their years, four student professionals possess not only the talent to tear at the heart but also embody the reality of a war thriving through the recruitment of the young.
Without a doubt, the non-stop thrill and substance sings through the direction of Jasson Minadakis and Rob Lutfy. Their scoring of the twists and turns draws us in due to its surroundings of what Broadway World called the “visually stunning…recreation of Scotland” with dream-like set and projections from Mike Post and the haunting original music score from team Chris Houston and vocalist Penina Goddessman. If you’re looking for a work of art, look no further. The colors, lights, and soundscape of Dunsinane epitomize a transformational experience. When the snow falls, so may the tears. Be prepared. Going with a group would only elevate it more to hear where others catch their breath.
The counter-history in this compelling story unlocks so many questions about Shakespeare’s take on events, the only question that remains is how many will make it to Marin Theatre Company in time for Dunsinane’s final week of performances? A night at Marin Theatre Company to see Dunsinane is to catch history — and feel it being made in the process.