Macbeth - The British Council Lebanon Event

December 04, 2015

The British Council Lebanon launches Shakespeare Lives


The British Council Lebanon launched its Shakespeare Lives country plan on Wednesday 2 December 2015 at Grand Cinemas, ABC Dbayeh. Hosted by the British Council Country Director, Donna McGowan and attended by His Excellency British Ambassador to Lebanon, Hugo Shorter, the reception gathered the British Council and The British Embassy friends and partners for the advance screening of the new Macbeth movie.



Set to engage half a billion people globally, the British Council and the GREAT Britain campaign announce Shakespeare Lives, a major global programme for 2016 celebrating Shakespeare’s works and his influence on culture, education and society on the 400th anniversary of his death.


The British Council Director, Donna McGowan, commented: ‘There’s no denying Shakespeare’s appeal is universal. Half of the world’s school children study him. He addresses issues that are as relevant today as they were four centuries ago - for example appearance and reality, leadership and power, love and destiny, family and relationships, identity and conflict - themes which have as much resonance in present-day Lebanon, as they do across the world.’ She added: ‘The British Council’s main sectors of Arts, English, Education and Society are collaborating to deliver a diverse programme that will not only reach Shakespeare lovers, but also engage new audiences’.

Using the words of Shakespeare himself, ‘Action is Eloquence’, McGowan numbered a series of activities planned for Lebanon across the British Council’s work in Arts, English, Education and Society while keeping the door open to other partners ‘so that together we can make as much impact as possible’ extending to different communities in Lebanon, including Syrian and Palestinian refugees and marginalised Lebanese.


In his speech, Ambassador Hugo Shorter reflected on the way that the Lebanese audience would relate to the struggles and rivalry in Macbeth when ‘Time and time again, British films, music and art have appealed to a global audience, because the themes and values resonate across cultures.’ Shorter also remarked that both James Bond and Shakespeare’s Macbeth are a reminder of the UK’s strength in creative industries, where the British Council are seen as the Ambassadors of that creativity’.