Luc Perceval asked Gerardjan Rijnders to adapt “Macbeth”. It was a radical interpretation that concentrates on the couple of Macbeth and his Lady as a sort of Adam and Eve who cannot have children and who compensate through their hunger for power. The Bourla was rebuilt as a snake pit for this dark adaptation. The audience sits in the balconies and ‘parterre’ is used as a gigantic playing area.
As a new Stap actor Guy Dirken made his peerless debut in 2004 as the gatekeeper. He is in the foreground with Wim Opbrouck (Macbeth) and Els Dottermans (Lady Macbeth) for over 3 hours. Catherine Springuel, Nancy Schellekens, Erna Roefs, Kristien Van Roy, Sylvie Mestdagh, Leen Teunkens and Peter Janssens play the roles of the witches who make all sorts of prophesies in this dark play in turn. There were 23 performances in Antwerp.
Directed by: Gerardjan Rijnders
Adaptation: Janine Brogt
Dramaturgy: Janine Brogt
Translation: Janine Brogt
Set: Paul Gallis
Costumes: Tessa Lute
Lighting Henk van der Geest
Hein Janssen - 27/03/04 - de volkskrant 2004
"Theatre director Luc Perceval asked for the participation of people with mental disabilities in his version of Shakespeare's Macbeth. They play the witches and the gatekeeper. At first it may seem like sensationalism but it makes sense in principle. People with Down syndrome are often ascribed the gift of clairvoyance. That was also the reason Lars Von Trier used them in his film 'the Kingdom', where they foretell all kinds of horrific scenes from the cellar in the hospital. In 'Macbeth' the witches' prophecies are also the engine of the story. The gatekeeper with Downs creates the sole disarming moment. He cannot stop laughing when Macbeth again snores and coughs like a pig.
Geert Sels - 27/03/04 - De Standaard 2004
"The opening scene is impressive. A few meters above the parterre a gangway is built as a continuation of the stage. It is raining at the end of this long street. In the middle, the witches who tell Macbeth he is to become king. They are Theater Stap actors, all with Down syndrome. Macbeth whispers their text to them word by word. In this version he cannot be seen as a confused victim; he is a manipulator from the very beginning."