1993

Qs: Summer Hours; Staged Lucrece; Re: *WT* Bear

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 4, No. 189.  Thursday, 25 March 1993.
 
(1)     From:   Georgianna Ziegler <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Thursday, 25 Mar 1993 16:46:42 -0500
        Subj:   Summer Hours
 
(2)     From:   Georgianna Ziegler <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Thursday, 25 Mar 1993 14:45:19 -0500
        Subj:   Lucrece on Stage
 
(3)     From:   Tom Loughlin <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Thursday, 25 Mar 1993 1:27 pm EST (18:27:33 UT)
        Subj:   The Bear
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 25 Mar 1993 16:46:42 -0500
Subject:        Summer Hours
 
Can anyone let me know what the summer hours (June-August) will be
for the British Library and the Public Record Office?  Thanks--
Georgianna
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Georgianna Ziegler <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 25 Mar 1993 14:45:19 -0500
Subject:        Lucrece on Stage
 
Does anyone know if there has been an attempt to dramatize Shakespeare's
poem in any form for stage production?  Thanks--Georgianna
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Tom Loughlin <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 25 Mar 1993 1:27 pm EST (18:27:33 UT)
Subject:        The Bear
 
   In a production at Gannon  University in Erie PA the actor  in
the bear costume was placed onstage before the lights went up for
Act II (after  intermission).  The costume  was designed to  look
something like a rock  with spines/needles growing out of  it, so
the actor  was motionless  appearing to  be part  of the  natural
environment.   The approaching  storm was  played  up  with sound
effects and lights played  against the cyc which were  on chasers
and increased in  blink rate to  simulate  approaching lightning.
As the  light/sound   show  increased  in   intensity,  Antigonus
"senses" the danger approaching  and runs off.  The actor  reared
up and created the appearance of a "Bigfoot" type creature, hairy
and with a  porcupine-like effect.  The  instant he  rose  up the
storm effect  reached a *real  loud* clap of  thunder,  the chase
effect stopped and the "bear" was backlit in a frozen pose.  The
image  lasted  for  a  second,  and  then  a blackout,  with  the
resulting "ghost"  effect catching the  creature still frozen  in
the reared-up  position.   It  fit  in  well  with the  overall
stylized concept of the play and was quite stunning.
 
      ---------------------------------------------------------------
      Tom Loughlin                *   BITNET
      Dept. of Theatre Arts       *    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
      SUNY College at Fredonia    *   INTERNET
      Fredonia NY 14063           *    This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
      Voice: 716.673.3597         *
      Fax:   716.673.3397         *   "Hail, hail Freedonia, land of
                                  *    the brave and free."  G. Marx
      ---------------------------------------------------------------

Re: The Bear Problem in *WT*

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 4, No. 188.  Wednesday, 24 March 1993.
 
(1)     From:   Mez <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 24 Mar 93 10:40:37 EST
        Subj:   Real Bear in *WT*
 
(2)     From:   John Drakakis <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 24 Mar 93 16:57:45 GMT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 4.0187 The Bear Problem in *WT*
 
(3)     From:   RONALD DWELLE <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Wednesday, 24 Mar 93 13:44:55 EST
        Subj:   Re: SHK 4.0187  The Bear Problem in *WT*
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Mez <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 24 Mar 93 10:40:37 EST
Subject:        Real Bear in *WT*
 
In a production of the MIT Shakespeare Ensemble, the bear was a person in a
pretty obvious bear suit. The intermission came directly before IV i. The bear
walked on to start the second half of the play, took off his [bear] head, and
played the part of Time as well.
 
        Mez
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           John Drakakis <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 24 Mar 93 16:57:45 GMT
Subject: 4.0187 The Bear Problem in *WT*
Comment:        Re: SHK 4.0187 The Bear Problem in *WT*
 
Apropos what's coming to be called "the bear problem" in WT, there was
an RSC Stratford production of some years ago which has the Bear returning
as the chorus Time.
 
This would certainly obviate the need to use a live bear!  I don't think
that the actor's name was Simon Smith, and the bear didn't dance, as I
recall.
 
John Drakakis
University of Stirling
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           RONALD DWELLE <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 24 Mar 93 13:44:55 EST
Subject: 4.0187  The Bear Problem in *WT*
Comment:        Re: SHK 4.0187  The Bear Problem in *WT*
 
Stephen Schrum asked:
 
>The real bear in WT: I am also curious about contemporary productions.
 
FYI: A local (Allendale, Michigan) student production features your standard
person in a fake bear costume. The actor hams it up a bit--an odd, but
effective, variation.

Bears and Dogs in Shakespearean Productions

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 4, No. 186.  Monday, 22 March 1993.
 
(1)     From:   Rasa Hollender <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Monday, 22 Mar 1993 13:26 EST
        Subj:   Re: SHK 4.0183  Re: Real Bear in *WT*
 
(2)     From:   Karin Youngberg <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Monday, 22 Mar 93 15:21:48 GMT-600
        Subj:   Re: SHK 4.0183  Re: Real Bear in *WT*
 
(3)     From:   Ron Macdonald <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Monday, 22 Mar 1993 11:06:06 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Stage dogs
 
(4)     From:   Helen Ostovich <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
        Date:   Monday, 22 Mar 1993 15:56:10 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 4.0180 Real Dog in *TGV*; Q: London Flat
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Rasa Hollender <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, 22 Mar 1993 13:26 EST
Subject: 4.0183  Re: Real Bear in *WT*
Comment:        Re: SHK 4.0183  Re: Real Bear in *WT*
 
There was a production somewhere (though I'm not sure where) of *WT*
in which the play opened with the action taking place in a large
room with a huge fake bear skin rug covering the stage floor.
When time came to Exit followed by a bear, the bear skin was somehow
hooked up to a rope pully system, rose up, and "chased" the
character out...
 
   Rasa L. Hollender
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Karin Youngberg <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, 22 Mar 93 15:21:48 GMT-600
Subject: 4.0183  Re: Real Bear in *WT*
Comment:        Re: SHK 4.0183  Re: Real Bear in *WT*
 
> The real bear in WT: I am also curious about contemporary productions. While
> wandering through the Berkeley Repertory Theatre costume shop, I saw their
> bear suit, and at Shakespeare Santa Cruz a HUGE bear puppet entered amidst a
> cloud of fog. Other solutions?
 
I have seen a production that just used the sound of storm and
animals and human screams to good effect.  Also I have seen a WT
that projected the shadow of a bear onto a rear screen.  That worked
well, too.
 
Karin Youngberg
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ron Macdonald <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, 22 Mar 1993 11:06:06 -0400 (EDT)
Subject:        Stage dogs
 
While acknowledging that there is no evidence that a dog actually appeared
in the role of Crab in _Two Gentleman_, Bert O. States has some wonderful
observations about the possibility of a live dog in Shakespeare's play
and elsewhere.  Among them:
 
  What surprises us, of course, is that the dog _can_ be used in
  the play, that it unknowingly cooperates in creating the illusion.
  And this surprise arises fro our observation of the dog as a
  dog-in-itself.  Questions like this might occur: Isn't it inter-
  esting that the dog will submit to being on stage?  Then, of
  course, the answer: It _isn't_ submitting, it is simply being
  itself.  What if it barks?  Urinates?  Obviously, even these
  natural acts, like the abuse of the boy actors, would contribute
  to further comedy.  So the illusion has suddenly become a field
  of play, of "what if"?  The illusion has introduced something into
  itself to demonstrate its tolerance of _things_.  It is not the
  world that has invaded the illusion; the illusion has stolen
  something from the world in order to display its own power.  Finally,
  one also suspects that an element of self-parody enters the play
  with the dog.  The whole enterprise of theatrical illusion gets
  gently debunked, a freedom Shakespeare was fond of indulging...
  The theater has, so to speak, met its match: the dog is blissfully
  above, or beneath, the business of playing, and we find ourselves
  cheerings its performance precisely because it isn't one.
 
For further thoughts well worth consulting, see _Great Reckonings in
Little Rooms: On the Phenomenology of Theater (U.Calif. Press, 1985),
pp. 32ff.
                           --Ron Macdonald <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
 
(4)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Helen Ostovich <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, 22 Mar 1993 15:56:10 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 4.0180 Real Dog in *TGV*; Q: London Flat
Comment:        Re: SHK 4.0180 Real Dog in *TGV*; Q: London Flat
 
Concerning Michael Friedman's comment that Launce needs at least an
imaginary dog to play off:  yes, I agree, especially in 2.3.  But the
actual on-stage props need include only a pair of shoes and a wooden
staff.  The dog might be represented by a lead or leash of some kind, with
the imaginary dog just off-stage.  The same trick could be used in 4.4,
though again it's easier to provide a real dog.  My comment is based on
the fact that no dog appears in the stage directions or cast list.  One of
the best dog-substitutes I ever saw was one used by an improv troupe at
Toronto's Harbourfront "Shakespeare in the Pond" series, where Launce
stood up to his knees in the pond, accompanied by a buoy on a rope.  The
buoy was a wonderfully bouncing puppy, splashing actor and audience alike,
and clearly demonstrating its lack of good manners.
 
Helen Ostovich
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The Bear Problem in *WT*

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 4, No. 187.  Wednesday, 24 March 1993.
 
From:           Robert O'Connor <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 24 Mar 1993 13:20:17 +1000
Subject: 4.0183  Re: Real Bear in *WT*
Comment:        Re: SHK 4.0183  Re: Real Bear in *WT*
 
Stephen Schrum asked:
 
>The real bear in WT: I am also curious about contemporary productions. While
>wandering through the Berkeley Repertory Theatre costume shop, I saw their
>bear suit, and at Shakespeare Santa Cruz a HUGE bear puppet entered amidst a
>cloud of fog. Other solutions?
 
Well, I saw English Shakespeare Company's production when they toured
Australia in early 1991. There solution (?) to the 'bear problem' was to
have Leontes walk on, pulling on a bear-paw glove, and 'kill' Antigonus
before the Shepherds came on!
 
ROC

The NTD's *Ophelia* at the Folger Theatre

Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 4, No. 185.  Monday, 22 March 1993.
 
From:           Hardy M. Cook <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, 22 March 1993
Subject:        NTD's *Ophelia* at the Folger Theatre
 
Dear SHAKSPEReans,
 
In SHK 4.0094 (Friday, February 19, 1993), SHAKSPERean Tony Naturale
reviewed the National Theatre of the Deaf's production of *Ophelia*,
directed by Jeff Wanshel.  In that posting, Naturale wrote,
 
>   In this adaptation of Hamlet, the playwright Jeff Wanshel worked
>closely with NTD to develop further the role of Ophelia. Ostensibly
>to present a woman's point of view in this "rotten kingdom" of
>Denmark, the play became an experiment with mixed results.  To keep
>the action rolling,  plot was  changed,  scenes borrowed from other
>Shakespeare's plays were included, and conflicts between Ophelia
>and Hamlet were highlightened further.
 
The Folger Library will be presenting the NTD's *Ophelia* from Thursday,
March 25, through Sunday, March 28, at the Folger Elizabethan Theatre as
a part of "Project Access," an outreach initiative made possible by a $2.5
million grant to the Library from the Lila Wallace-Reader's Digest Fund
[See SHK 4.0033 (20 January 1993) for details of the grant].
 
Tickets may be charged by phone at 202-544-7077.

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