As the cast masterfully characterized Shakespeare’s saturnine work, we were inexorably drawn into the portentous tale. Supporting the account were the dim penumbra of macabre images, a panoply of sounds effects, striking musical soundscapes, the intense angular stage blocking of secondary characters in many scenes, and the gloom of a Scottish deid bell that either sought orisons or repelled evil spirits.
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Images usually associated with death with their usual, reverent treatment in religious funerals are presented to contrast with death during wartime. The low-value war sets on human life is exemplified by the opening reference to those “who die as cattle,” akin to animals in a slaughterhouse.