Nashville Ballet adapts ‘Macbeth’ tale

Dance adaptation of Shakespeare’s MacbethNashville Ballet will unearth the sinister side of human nature with Something Wicked, an experimental adaptation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth, just in time for Halloween on October 20-22, 2016, at TPAC’s Polk Theater. While the ballet explores the story’s classic themes of power and fate, Nashville Ballet’s version delves deeper into the role of the three witches.


“In Shakespeare’s tale, the witches predict Macbeth’s fate as King of Scotland, which spurs Macbeth and his wife to murderous actions to fulfill the prophecy,” stated Nashville Ballet Artistic Director & CEO Paul Vasterling. “In our version, the witches don’t merely plant this seed in Macbeth’s head. Instead, they actively manipulate him as a pawn in their own greedy quest for power.”


With the witches in the driver’s seat, the ballet explores a primitive question of human nature: Are we a victim of fate, or do we have the free will to play our own cards? As Macbeth embarks on a murderous quest for the throne, what was once his motivation—power—is ultimately what becomes his source of guilt, paranoia and eventual descent into madness.


Something Wicked is the full-length premiere of a workshop-style piece presented during 2013’s Emergence, which allowed audiences a first glimpse into the creative process. Vasterling’s original choreography, concept and interpretation feature the Grammy-nominated ALIAS Chamber Ensemble performing a collection of works by contemporary American composer Kenji Bunch.


“This ballet feels especially communal,” Vasterling said. “During the creation process in 2013, the dancers played a large part in guiding the direction of the piece by infusing their interpretations and movements into the choreography. Not only that, but we encouraged audience feedback and incorporated it into what you’ll see on stage this time around.”


Something Wicked is presented by Union Station Hotel. Tickets start at $28 and can be purchased in person at the TPAC Box Office in downtown Nashville, by phone at (615) 782-4040 or at A complete performance schedule and more information can be found online.



Photo courtesy of Nashville Ballet.