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Home :: Archive :: 1992 :: December ::
Visual Style for *Lear*; Actresses; Directors' Rights
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 3, No. 375. Sunday, 13 December 1992.
 
(1)     From:   John Steven Paul <
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        Date:   Saturday, 12 Dec 1992 12:13:37 -0600 (CST)
        Subj:   [Visual Style for *King Lear*]
 
(2)     From:   Katherine West <
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        Date:   Saturday, 12 Dec 1992 14:48:12 -0500
        Subj:   Re: Q: Doubling; Another Spinoff; Q: History of Actresses
 
(3)     From:   Kate Gray <
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        Date:   Saturday, 12 Dec 92 22:02:21 EDT
        Subj:   [Directors' Rights]
 
 
(1)---------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           John Steven Paul <
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Date:           Saturday, 12 Dec 1992 12:13:37 -0600 (CST)
Subject:        [Visual Style for *King Lear*]
 
The question of modernistic  starkness versus Renaissance pageantry is very
interesting to me.  I will be directing KING LEAR at Valparaiso University this
spring and I have not settled as yet on a visual style.  I feel very much
influenced, perhaps trapped, by Peter Brook's movie in all its black and white
austerity.  Perhaps, in the interest of doing Shakespeare faithfully, I sould
be seeing red -- and purple.  John Steven Paul

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(2)---------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Katherine West <
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Date:           Saturday, 12 Dec 1992 14:48:12 -0500
Subject:        Re: Q: Doubling; Another Spinoff; Q: History of Actresses
 
Larry:
 
There's a recent book entitled _The First English Actresses_, but I
can't offhand recall the author.  It deals with the first English
actresses on the Restoration stage.
 
(3)---------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Kate Gray <
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Date:           Saturday, 12 Dec 92 22:02:21 EDT
Subject:        [Directors' Rights]
 
I've enjoyed all of the commentary on Zeffirelli's versions of *R&J* and
*Hamlet* : he has provided us with wonderful academic teaching tools and
for those who would otherwise not engage the plays, he has made them
accessible--even if he did turn Juliet into a complete noodle, he DID
give us that splendid choreographing of the maresca.  What you are saying
about director's rights is interesting for while we agree with making
changes to plays as old as Shakespeare's to make them easier for
contemporary habits of mind and body, there is not a published playwright
(or his or her agent) who would agree to making any changes not approved
by the playwright.  Plays are understood to be collaborations between
playwright, director, and actors, and the best plays have holes written into
them to allow the free play of interpretation--but just try to claim
"director's rights" as you change one word of *Lettice and Lovage*--The
agent from Samuel French will see that that director has a hard time getting
permission to put on another French play. So directors' rights are a bit more
complicated--but then there are plenty of interpretive holes in Shakespeare's
plays.
 
Kate Gray
George Washington University
cf012c@gwuvm
 

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