‘Macbeth – The Fairy Tale’
Once upon a time in the ancient kingdom of Scotland there lived a noble and just king called Duncan. He was a generous and kind king, whose only wish was to bring peace and happiness to his people, and to keep pain and suffering from their lives. However, many people were jealous of the power and glory that came with being king and swore to take poor Duncan’s crown. Armies from faraway places like Ireland and Norway came to Scotland to try and kill the goodly Duncan and steal his crown by force. Even one of his own friends, who Duncan had given the important job of Thane of Cawdor, turned against him and tried to destroy him. This greatly saddened Duncan and he felt worried that he could not even trust his own friends. Luckily though he also had many loyal people around him; people who were happy to bravely defend both Duncan and Scotland from foreign armies and deceiving traitors.
The bravest and most loyal of these were two Thanes called Macbeth and Banquo. These men were fearsome warriors, able to defeat any man in battle. Once Scotland was threatened, these heroic figures would bravely leap to its defence and brutally punish any men who crossed their paths. Banquo was very courageous and strong, but even he did not compare to the valiant Macbeth, who fought heroically alongside him in defending Scotland from a treacherous army of invaders and traitors. The king was so pleased with Macbeth after this particular battle that he decided to reward him by giving him a big promotion: he was to become Thane of Cawdor – a title to be taken from the previous Thane, who had betrayed the noble Duncan by organising a bloody rebellion.
On the way home from the terrible battle in which they had almost single-handedly saved Duncan and Scotland, Banquo and Macbeth ran into three very strange women who seemed to appear almost from nowhere. These strange creatures talked in riddles and spells and shocked Macbeth and Banquo with their bizarre appearance- they were dressed in dark clothing and their faces were covered in beards! What Macbeth and Banquo didn’t realise was that these unusual women were actually magical creatures who could tell the future; and look into any man’s heart to see his deepest desires.
The three weird women began to speak to Macbeth and Banquo. They told Macbeth that he would become Thane of Cawdor, and, even stranger, that he would become king! They had looked into Macbeth’s heart and discovered his deepest desire; to become king. Macbeth was greatly astonished and scared by the witches. Banquo was curious about them, and asked them what strange prophecies they had for him. They told him, in their strange riddles that his children would become king, although he would never be one. Macbeth begged them to tell him more, but they disappeared into thin air. The two warriors continued their way towards Duncan’s castle. Banquo thought the three witches were strange and curious, but Macbeth was very worried about what they had said to him. They had discovered his deepest desires. Before Macbeth and Banquo could discuss the three strange women further, two other loyal thanes of Duncan’s met them. To Macbeth and Banquo’s astonishment, they announced to them that Duncan had given Macbeth the great honour of Thane of Cawdor, just as the witches had promised. Macbeth was now very anxious and worried.
Macbeth asked his friend to not tell anyone about their strange encounter with the weird women. Banquo gladly agreed as the news of Macbeth’s new title had greatly shocked him. Happy, our two heroes continued their journey back to their beloved king. Meanwhile at Duncan’s palace the great king was bothered. He just couldn’t believe his loyal friend could betray so terribly. He confided in his beloved son, Malcolm, telling him his worries. The king told Malcolm how hard he found it to judge how good or bad a person was by simply looking at them. Before Malcolm could reply however the two brave warriors returned. Delighted Duncan forgot all about his troubles and showered his brave subjects in praise. ‘Oh brave and valiant Macbeth I can never repay you for the loyalty you have shown me. Please accept my humble gift of Thane of Cawdor,’ gushed the King. ‘Oh really it was nothing. I was only doing what I am supposed to do,’ replied Macbeth. ‘My praises to you too Banquo!’ ‘It was my pleasure to defend you good King,’ said Banquo. ‘You are both my best and most loyal of subjects. Now though I have an announcement I must make… I am ready to name my successor. I want my dearest son, Malcolm, to take over from me when I die. I know you will make a great king, Malcolm. And now we shall celebrate Macbeth’s new promotion! We shall have a huge feast to be held at your castle Macbeth!’ announced the King happily. ‘Of course my King let me go and tell my wife to make ready our castle’, replied Macbeth. Before anyone could object Macbeth turned and left the palace, heading swiftly to his castle. He was shocked. The witches had awoken Macbeth’s deepest desire and now he wanted to be the king, not Malcolm! Not knowing what to do Macbeth decided to write a letter to his dear wife. Surely she would know how to help him.
In Macbeth’s castle, Lady Macbeth received a letter from her husband. She read about his encounter with the three weird women and how they promised he would become king. Lady Macbeth thought about this. “Becoming king would be terrific,” she said to herself. “But I fear you are too nice and kind to perform any sort of crime to become king in a shorter length of time. No, you will certainly need my help and my advice.” Lady Macbeth then began plotting against Duncan. In the end, her plan involved killing the king. She called upon evil spirits to help her become a cruel evil spirited woman so she would be able to follow through with her plan. When Macbeth later arrived at his castle he told Lady Macbeth about Duncan coming to their castle that night. But Lady Macbeth already knew that. “Stay calm,” she advised him, “Don’t let them know what’s going on inside your head and follow my plan.”
“What a nice castle they have.” Duncan exclaimed upon arrival. “Indeed it is.” Agreed Banquo. They were shortly met by Lady Macbeth who greeted them and led them inside. She brought them into the dining room where dinner would be served soon. “Excuse me a moment, my Husband must not know you’re here yet. But in my absence make yourselves comfortable.” Lady Macbeth then left the dining room and searched for her husband. When she found him, he was talking to himself. “Why haven’t you come to greet your guests?” Lady Macbeth demanded. “You must not lose focus. If this plan is to work, we cannot afford to act suspicious.” She told him. “I can’t do this. We cannot kill the king; he does not deserve to be killed.” Macbeth said. “Are you afraid to kill the king? Are you not man enough to kill the king?” Lady Macbeth asked. “Of course I’m man enough!” Macbeth replied. “Well then you should have no problem doing this simple task that I ask of you. Wait for my sign, and then we will strike. Do not fail me Macbeth.” And with that she walked back to the dining room leaving Macbeth to dwell on what she had just said.
Suddenly, Macbeth sees a vision of a bloody dagger floating before him, leading him to Duncan’s room. When he hears Lady Macbeth ring the bell as a sign for Macbeth to meanly kill Duncan, he sets out to do this terrible deed. Macbeth enters, still carrying the bloody daggers after killing the great king Duncan. Lady Macbeth again gives out to him for not completing his little job and puts the daggers under the poor old body guards who were sleeping very peacefully. While she does this, Macbeth imagines that he hears a mean voices saying that he shall sleep no more. Lady Macbeth and tells Macbeth that “a little water will get rid of these bad things we have done”
As the thanes Macduff and Lennox arrive, the porter starts joking and saying that he is guarding the gate to hell. Then Macduff discovers Duncan’s dead body. Macbeth then kills the two innocent bodyguards, claiming that he was so sad that Duncan was not alive any more. Duncan’s sons Malcolm and Donalbain got very scared then and ran away to England and Ireland. This made people think they were bad boys and played a part in poor old king Duncan’s death so Macbeth is then crowned king of Scotland.
As the death of Duncan hangs in the air the people are getting on with life. Banquo has his first encounter with the new King, King Macbeth. Banquo believes that Macbeth was the villain who murdered his King but he decides not to say anything, as he wants to be on the right side of the new king. King Macbeth offers to meet up with Banquo later that day and he accepts the offer. Macbeth has a discussion with a murderer and the death of Banquo is organised and to be carried out as soon as possible.
Lady Macbeth and Macbeth have a short conversation about things and Lady Macbeth is feeling regretful about all that was done “Nought’s had, all’s spent, where our desire is got without content” but Macbeth has a slightly different opinion. He is slightly regretful and jealous of Duncan being dead but now he wants to act alone, “Be innocent of knowledge, dearest chuck” and doesn’t want to confide in Lady Macbeth any more.
The murder of Macbeth’s friend Banquo was simply terrible since it was the victim’s friend who was responsible. Three murderers arrived where they knew Banquo would be travelling and they brutally killed him but they did not manage to kill Banquo’s son Fleance who just about got away. As poor Banquo is being stabbed he gets one last piece of advice in to his son, which was “Thou mayst revenge” and he is then killed. He always knew from the time Duncan died that Macbeth was the one who killed him.
Back at the castle Macbeth and his guests are preparing for their banquet but then Macbeth hears one of the murderers enter and runs over to him to see if the deed has be done. The murderers face was covered in blood is it of Banquo he cries yes my king but Fleance escaped, you fool you I wanted both of them killed but one death is better than none I suppose. ‘Everything all right my dear’ yes! Macbeth replies with anger “be innocent of the knowledge my dearest chuck” and you shall not become involved.
As everyone begins to be seated for their meal Macbeth discovers that there is no seat for him to dine at the table with them. “Here is a place reserv’d sir” exclaims Lennox. Only Macbeth can see what is really going on infront of him as he sees the ghost of his recently deceased friend Banquo. Macbeth begins to panic and loose his cool shouting at an empty chair and everybody at the table becomes scared at the lunatic that is Macbeth, none other than lady Macbeth comes into save the day sending all the guests home and Macbeth to his chamber
Lennox and another lord are speaking and feel like Macbeth was the one who killed Duncan and that people must “not walk to late” as no-one is safe anymore. Lennox is wondering why did Macbeth grieve so much showing his suspension on Macbeth, and they soon stop referring to Macbeth as Macbeth and as a tyrant now. A tyrant is a cruel and oppressive ruler.
The weird sisters are talking in rhymes and riddles just before Macbeth enters. Macbeth enters as a brave soldier thinking he is in control of this situation and calling the witches “midnight hags”. Macbeth wants to find out what is going to happen next so the witches show him three apparitions. The first apparition is of an armed head and tells Macbeth “Macbeth! Macbeth! Macbeth! Beware Macduff, Beware the Thane of Fife. Dismiss me. Enough.” Macbeth feels as this is something he always knew and is going to kill Macduff as he is trouble. A second apparition then appeared of a bloody child and said “be bloody, bold, and resolute: laugh to scorn The power of man, for none of woman born Shall harm Macbeth” this made Macbeth feel as if no-one can harm him, and that he can relax as Macduff can’t harm Macbeth. A third apparition then appears to Macbeth of a child crowned with a tree in his hand and it said “Be lion-melted, proud, and take no care who chafes, who frets, or where conspirers are Macbeth shall never vanquish’d be until Great Birnam Wood to high Dunsinane Hill Shall come against him” this makes Macbeth feel even better thinking that this can’t possibly happen. As he demands to know more the witches show him a show of eight Kings, the last with a glass in his hand; Banquo’s ghost following. This changes everything around for Macbeth and hurts his eyes to watch. The witches start to mock Macbeth and then vanish. Macbeth then decides that he is going to kill Macduff’s family and anything in his way.
Meanwhile at Macduff’s castle his wife Lady Macduff has heard the news that her husband is gone away. She is upset about this and is angry that he left her and their children behind during such a bad time in Scotland. Ross tries to convince her that Macduff is doing the right thing but she doesn’t seem convinced. Her son beings to wonder where his father is and starts asking questions. While there talking about it a messenger appears and tells Lady Macduff that something awful will happen and that she needs to leave. She panics but before she can even get the chance to leave a strange man appears looking for Macduff. Lady Macduff doesn’t know and the strange man calls Macduff a traitor. Her son shouts at him and the bad man hurts him. Lady Macduff runs trying to save herself but it’s too late for her and her family.
In England Macduff has gone to meet Malcolm to look for help. He arrives at the castle and tells Malcolm everything Macbeth has done and asks for his help. Malcolm wants to make sure he can trust Macduff and tests his loyalty to Scotland. He lies to Macduff telling him he would be an awful King. Macduff is very unhappy about this and Malcolm now realises Macduff has Scotland’s best interest in mind and can trust him. Ross arrives and both he and Macduff tell Malcolm and the bad and nasty things Macbeth has done. Ross then tells Macduff the news about his family. He is devastated and is in total shock. He is also furious and Malcolm convinces him to take his revenge on Macbeth. They get ready to leave, to go to Scotland to fight Macbeth and stop him for good.
Elsewhere in Scotland a Doctor and a Gentlewoman speak in hushed about their Mistress, the Lady Macbeth. They talk of the bad dreams that torment her and the midnight walking she takes herself on. Lady Macbeth wanders in and begins to wash her hands and speak in her sleep of what she and Macbeth have done. Eventually Lady Macbeth leaves and the Doctor and Gentlewoman speak in hushed tones again.
Meanwhile in the True Kings’ army four Lords, Menteith, Caithness, Angus and Lennox speak on how terrible Macbeth is, and how such a man could be King when the rightful heir is not.
In the Castle False King Macbeth is spouting his invincibility because of the Prophecies, when he learns that Malcolm’s army is approaching. Macbeth orders his men to get ready for battle.
In Birnam Wood, True King Malcolm orders his men to disguise themselves as trees and foliage of the forest to hide their approach towards the Castle.
Macbeth orders his soldiers to prepare for battle. During this he wonders about what life is about. He finds that life is pointless. He is told that the Woods are moving towards him and his men. Macbeth resolves to die against the men of Malcolm’s army.
Just outside Macbeth’s Castle at Dunsinane the army of Malcolm the Wise finally arrive at the gates. Tens upon thousands of soldiers loyal to Malcolm are ready to commence a battle that will determine the future of Scotland.
Malcolm’s army is so large that their chanting is able to shake the ground. This almighty sight is led by the Wise Malcolm with the Brave Macduff and the courageous Old Siward not too far behind him. Old Siward and his noble son are the first to storm the Castle on Malcolm’s command. Macduff is eager to join them but he shall have to wait until the Giant wooden gates fall and until the epic battle begins.
Inside the Castle lays the true bloody nature of war. The colour red can be found everywhere! Macbeth can be seen defending his crown, he considers it rightfully his.
Macbeth is becoming more animalistic and even though it appears to be an impossible situation to get out of Macbeth thoroughly believes he is indestructible. His sword is swinging in the air for quite some time as enemy after enemy approaches him and they are dispatched of quite easily.
Young Siward is making his way through the carnage; he has a glee of hope in his eyes, hoping that he will do his father proud. He is triumphing against Macbeth’s troops. Young Siward is truly a noble subject. Unfortunately Young Siward’s courageous nature is short-lived as the ruthless malevolent Macbeth crosses paths with Young Siward and he is slaughtered. Macbeth now smiles at his work and shouts joyfully at his invulnerability, He once again acknowledges this before leaving the room to search for more people to kill.
Meanwhile at another part of the Castle Macduff is reflecting on how his family had fallen by Macbeth’s command. Macduff will always be haunted by his family’s death but he hopes to atone for their murder by defeating the Evil King. He believes that it is not only his duty but his destiny to slay the beast. He is now on the hunt for Macbeth and he won’t stop until he finds him. Malcolm and Old Siward are also looking for Macbeth but along the way they learn that Macbeth’s forces are not only losing but are close to giving up altogether.