Stories from our international boarding schools

Shakespeare in the caves

Students who study languages and the arts at Torbay had an amazing opportunity to watch the classic Shakespeare play Macbeth at a truly unique venue, Kents Cavern in Torquay. This theatre company have been putting on this show at Kents for many years and we have been regular visitors.

Kents Cavern is one of Europe’s top prehistoric Stone Age caves with an extensive labyrinth of spectacular and easily accessible caverns. This iconic heritage attraction has many quality tourism awards. Its also the perfect location for the dark tale of Macbeth with dark corners for the three witches and evil plots of murder.

A brave Scottish general named Macbeth receives a prophecy from a trio of witches that one day he will become King of Scotland. Consumed by ambition and spurred to action by his wife, Macbeth murders King Duncan and takes the Scottish throne for himself. He is then wracked with guilt and paranoia. Forced to commit more and more murders to protect himself from enmity and suspicion, he soon becomes a tyrannical ruler. The bloodbath and consequent civil war swiftly take Macbeth and Lady Macbeth into the realms of madness and death.

Set in this amazing setting no one was sure what was coming next. Witches could be heard in distant caverns and we would be moved around this vast cave system from scene to scene. The actors looked amazing in their costumes and war paint all of which collectively drew us all in top the atmosphere of the play.

As the play grew in intensity the lighting and effect seemed to shadow the dark turns that the play makes as Macbeth slides further and further into madness.

This is an amazing way to learn and understand a play as important as Macbeth because we were able to feel the intense nature of the play because of the setting and the amazing theatre company that put on the production.

At the end we had a chance to ask the actors questions about the play and what hey enjoyed about a setting like Kents. This was an amazing chance to find out what its like to take on a play such as this. A great extension to our understanding of the play and a great night out.

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