The first episode, which featured actor Ethan Hawke examining Macbeth was a real treat. Hawke, known for his own interpretation of Hamlet, examined the possibilities of exploring the character of Macbeth, a part he yearns to play. He visited Scotland and spoke to other actors who had assayed the role. The episode also featured scenes from interpretations by actors Patrick Stewart and Antony Sher. Noted Shakespeare scholars also weigh in to give the play and its characters context. One of the more interesting observations that came up during the episode was that the Macbeths, for all of their murderous impulses, are one of Shakespeare's happier married couples. It is this sort of fresh look at an old play that most viewers may not have glanced at or thought about since high school English class that makes Shakespeare Uncovered so interesting to watch.
|Ethan Hawke consults fellow actor Richard Easton on how to play the dagger scene in Macbeth|
|Derek Jacobi as Richard II, John Gielgud as John of Gaunt|
|David Tennant as Hamlet, Patrick Stewart as Claudius|
PBS also includes links to three filmed Shakespeare plays:
Macbeth, starring Patrick Stewart and Kate Fleetwood
Hamlet, starring David Tennant and Patrick Stewart
King Lear, starring Ian McKellen
This is a real treat for fans of Shakespeare and is making me want to hunt down some of those older late '70s - early '80s versions of the plays, too.