Macbeth – a theater session

At the beginning of january this year I did a photo shoot as part of an academic project on William Shakespeare’s Macbeth. It was a project for the theater studies master class at the Open University of Cyprus.

Vanessa directed “Act I, Scene III – The Witches’ Prophecies” of William Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

Therefore a lot of preparation had to be done. She and her acting crew brought a huge set of wardrobe and makeup to the Pneumatiko Kentro Spaton “Christos Bekas” theater, where the acting would take place.

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Not only wardrobe and makeup had to be brought and prepared, but also a recorded background spell. Ann-Venette Christodoulou, Evi Louka and Matina Dimitriou did a stunning reciting on the spell.

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Some inspirational images for the make up session that was yet to come.

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„To each one Satan gave a familiar spirit in the form of a beast, a bird or serpent which was suckled by the witch”

 Shakespeare, William; Walter, J. H (1965): Macbeth. London: Heinemann Educational Books. p.8

Three witches, three different styles on their costume and make-up. While the male actors received a horizontal line in black colour across their faces, the female make-up displayed the Serpent, the Beast and the Bird.

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Nancy Gika ready for her disguise as witch.

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I’ve brought some clothes to support the actors.

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After the Serpent was finished, it was Vanessas job to prepare the Bird.

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The stage. The actors began to warm up, while we prepared the costumes and sound system.

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The beautiful Ann-Venette, ready to be turned into the Bird.

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And her dark side to be displayed…

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Tools of the trade.

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Fun in the back room. We had to wait for another theater group to finish, so the actors got a little bit crazy and played some more little scenes to warm up. The team brought also some cake and hot tea – perfect preparation for a long evening.

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Dimitri Theocharidis as Banquo.

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Ioanna Soulachaki as Beast.

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Due to the tough schedule, she finished her make-up by herself, while we prepped the stage.

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To test the lighting, I asked her for a quick closeup portrait. I love the outcome and the contrasty look.

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Yet some more make-up had to be finished for our main character.

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Patience is a gift, that I’ve never received.

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And the acting begins… Thodoris Tsouanatos was the perfect choice to impersonate Macbeth.

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A close up of Dimitri.

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Fotis took care of all the mixing and the sound setup. It was the first time for me to see such a huge mixer. I didn’t dare to touch any of these switches, but I was tempted to do so.

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An overview of the stage in the theater. I loved to see how easy it was to control the lighting and sound. Really a perfect place for plays and shootings.

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I bow to no man. But I bow to these witches.

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Last instructions.

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To be or not to be…

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Good sir, why do you start; and seem to fear

 Things that do sound so fair? I’ the name of truth,

    Are ye fantastical, or that indeed

    Which outwardly ye show? My noble partner

    You greet with present grace and great prediction

    Of noble having and of royal hope,

    That he seems rapt withal: to me you speak not.

    If you can look into the seeds of time,

    And say which grain will grow and which will not,

    Speak then to me, who neither beg nor fear

    Your favours nor your hate.

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Nektarios Santamouris played a stunning job at the bagpipe.

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Three witches and one Macbeth.

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Waiting…

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And filming…

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While the others played their roles and Fotis captured all the material on camera for the final edit, Nektarios and me took some closeup portraits in the backroom.

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I loved his costume in combination with the bagpipe. I didn’t just look mystical, it was mystical – to hear these strange sounds from his instrument.

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An argument? No, just a little scene to rehearse.

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A fight?

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Behind the scenes.

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Abrakadabra.

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Roar…

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Three beauties, yet three witches.

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The whole crew of the evening. In the end we finished at almost 2 o’clock in the morning and we started around 8 o’clock in the evening. While I only took the photographs, I have to say it was kind of exhausting – I can’t imagine how it must be as actor to rehearse and play for such a long time.

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Still arguing. No not really. Everybody on set had a great time. We laughed a lot and it was always a very constructive and positive atmosphere to work with.

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Banquo

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and Macbeth

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all hail !

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Your children shall be kings.

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But instead a Macbeth we’ve found a rockstar here – I guess.

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I loved the acting of every single one of them.

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Yet I’ve chosen a few photographs that caught my eye the most.

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I love the make-up and the dress – a stunning pose and some lighting that really makes me love this photograph. I can’t wait for a fine art print here.

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End…

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