By Matthew Blank
and Joseph Marzullo
22 Apr 2013
Set in a psychiatric unit, Cumming plays a patient who is reliving the story of Macbeth – bringing to life over 15 characters in Shakespeare's bloody work, which is performed without an intermission. It has a running time of one hour and 45 minutes. Previews began April 7. It is scheduled to play a limited run through June 30.
The new staging of Macbeth premiered at the National Theatre of Scotland in June 2012 and played a New York run at the Rose Theatre in July 2012.
Tony Award winner John Tiffany (Once, The Glass Menagerie, Black Watch, The Bacchae) directs the production with Andrew Goldberg (The Bomb-itty of Errors). Ken Davenport (Godspell, Somewhere in Time, Altar Boyz) produces the Broadway run.
"This is the most thrilling thing I've ever done," Cumming told Playbill in a recent interview. "The first performance I did in Scotland, I thought I would die," he said. "I know that's a trite thing to say, but I really thought, 'This is insane. What am I doing?'"
The cast also features Jenny Sterlin (Heartbreak House, Major Barbara) and Brendan Titley (As You like It, Measure for Measure), who portray the Doctor and Orderly, respectively. Chris Kipiniak (Metamorphoses) understudies both roles.
Tiffany previously directed Cumming (Cabaret, Threepenny Opera, The Seagull) in The Bacchae, which was seen at the Lincoln Center Festival in 2008. Cumming made his stage debut as Malcolm in the Michael Boyd production of Macbeth in Glasgow.
The production has scenic and costume design by Merle Hensel, lighting design by Natasha Chivers, sound design by Fergus O'Hare, video projection design by Ian William Galloway, voice by Ros Steen, movement by Christine Devaney and music by Max Richter.
According to producers, "Macbeth is set in a clinical room deep within a dark psychiatric unit. Cumming is the lone patient, reliving the infamous story and inhabiting each role himself. Closed circuit television cameras watch the patient's every move as the walls of the psychiatric ward come to life in a visually stunning multi-media theatrical experience of Shakespeare's notorious tale of desire, ambition and the supernatural."
Cumming's screen credits include his Emmy-nominated performance on "The Good Wife," as well as "Goldeneye," "Spy Kids," "X2: X-Men United," "Titus," "Eyes Wide Shut," "The Tempest," "Sweet Land," "Sex and the City," "Frasier" and "Tinman."
A limited amount of "$30 under 30" rush tickets are available at the box office for day-of performances. For tickets visit Telecharge.com. The Barrymore Theatre is located at 243 West 47th Street.