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Home :: Archive :: 1991 :: December ::
*Prospero's Books* and *The Tempest*
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 2, No. 327. Tuesday, 17 Dec 1991.
 
 
From: 		Stephen Orgel <
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Subject: 2.0325  *Prospero's Books*
Comment: 	Re: SHK 2.0325  *Prospero's Books*
Date: 		Sun, 15 Dec 91 9:46:20 PST
 
In reply to Nate Johnson's query, Adrian Kiernander used multiple Ariels and
multiple everyone else in his brilliant TEMPEST two years ago in Brisbane;
there was lots of gender crossing too. And when Ferdinand carried logs, what
he carried was a succession of Prosperos on his back.  The production was
just as incomprehensible to an audience that didn't know the play inside out
as PROSPERO'S BOOKS, but for the students who put it on--and for me--it was
a revelation, or rather a series of revelations.  For the record, I found
PB visually overwhelming, and I loved the books themselves, but I got fairly
fed up with it after twenty minutes or so.  And for me, there was a real
giveaway about how basically traditional the interpretation really was when
Miranda's "Abhorred slave" speech was given to Prospero--a particularly
pointless emendation in this production, since Gielgud is speaking everyone's
lines anyway.
 
Stephen Orgel
 

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