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It’s not immediately easy to find any correlation between Macbeth and the deputy Prime Minister, but this new satire from Oxford University creates one with great wit and a marvellously dry sense of humour. As each scene unfolds there’s a fun game of join the dots to be played, as the audience figure out the parallels being drawn between the Shakespeare play and Nick Clegg’s story. The famous ‘Double, double, toil and trouble’ scene, for example, is given a particularly hilarious makeover in its new context. It’s all very clever, and very silly.

The performances are somewhat variable with some actors seeming a little less sure of themselves than others. Overall, however, it’s an impressive display with some excellent comic turns from a number of the cast. Emma D’Arcy provokes laughter after mere seconds on stage by simply pulling faces and continues to stand out as a great comic actor for the duration of the show, whilst Thomas Bailey’s Ed Miliband is a real joy to watch.

Satirically speaking, this production doesn’t really offer anything new to the table – yes, a lot of people feel betrayed by Nick Clegg and Andrew Marr has big ears, we know – but if the aim was to produce a hilarious crossover that’s clever and yet entirely accessible at the same time, then they’ve certainly achieved that. The performers conjure up a warm atmosphere and give the impression that they’re having a great time messing about with their subject matter. The audience leaves greatly entertained, if not challenged.

Venue Number 29. Paradise in The Vault, 11 Merchant Street, EH1 2QD. 22-26 August 19:30 (45 minutes). Suitability: PG.

The Blurb

An original tragicomedy, MacClegg is a ruthless Shakespearean interpretation of the political trajectory of our beloved Deputy PM. Winner of Best New Writing at Oxford University. 'Incredible ... constantly clever and never predictable' (Oxford Theatre Review). @VoteMacClegg.

Call Sheet

Production Company
St Edmund Hall, Oxford University / The John Oldham Society

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