Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 4, No. 198. Saturday, 27 March 1993.
Date: Saturday, 27 Mar 1993 20:58 EST
Subject: 4.0197 Re: Audience Participation
Comment: Re: SHK 4.0197 Re: Audience Participation
A second thought on characters asking audiences to judge (two
thoughts on the same day is pretty good for me these days):
Kitely somewhere in the middle of *Every Man In*. He's got to
rush off to take care of some money business, but he's horribly
worried that if he leaves her home unsupervised, somebody's bound
to come in and do his wife.
I saw an RSC production maybe ten years ago in which the actor
played directly to us, asking for help. I don't have the play
here, so I don't know whether the text exactly requires such a
performance--presumably just with lines like "what should I do"
(I doubt it)? But it was tremendous--excruciatingly embarrassing
and hilariously funny at once. Willy nilly, we were in cahoots
with his madness, and were eventually sufficiently embarrassed by
his pauses to tell him to do what to do. (The actor would make
sure that our advice corresponded to the plot requirements.) All
this made for a very appropriate ending when Kitely was purged of
his humor and bequeathed us his diseases (or is that a different