Composing Performance: How can music and sound be used to create an immersive solo performance of Shakespeare’s Lady Macbeth?
This study reflects on the processes taken to create an immersive solo performance of Shakespeare’s Lady Macbeth using sound and music. Through an initial preparatory phase of textual analysis, adapting and editing Shakespeare’s Macbeth, musical choice and sourcing of additional sound effects, this study outlines the process of creating a solo performance focused on character, specifically Lady Macbeth. It will explore creative and practical choices of recording and editing sound for performance. The primary focus for this performance was on the final audio produced. However means of presentation became a strong consideration for this audio based performance. This study considers the factors of presenting audio based performance to an audience through visual staging, including lighting, set and an actor’s presence, and the challenges of keeping focus on the audio whilst giving the audience a focal point. This study aims to highlight the potential creative uses of music and sound in performance with its focus on enhancing the character and the story. It will also highlight the sensorial nature of Shakespeare’s work that provides the practitioner with the existing material to create an audio based solo performance that immerses an audience in the character’s environment, and by extension the performer.