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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: March ::
Re: *TN* Video; Black Characters
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0204.  Sunday, 12 March 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Kenneth S. Rothwell <
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        Date:   Saturday, 11 Mar 1995 12:18:51 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0188 Re: *TN* Video;
 
(2)     From:   Andre G. Bourassa <
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        Date:   Saturday, 11 Mar 95 14:54:46 EST
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0195  Re: Black Characters on Shakespeare's Stage
 
(3)     From:   Milla Riggio <
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        Date:   Saturday, 11 Mar 1995 22:39:29 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0195  Re: Black Characters on Shakespeare's Stage
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Kenneth S. Rothwell <
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Date:           Saturday, 11 Mar 1995 12:18:51 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 6.0188 Re: *TN* Video;
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0188 Re: *TN* Video;
 
Bradley Berens has a perfect right to denounce the 1970 Precision Video
production of TN as "Awful," if that's what he thinks. I am a little put off,
however, by his statement that I "forgot" to mention that it was "awful." I
can't "forget" what I never thought in the first place. I remember happily
screening it at the NFTVA in London several years ago and thinking that Alec
Guinness as Malvolio and Joan Plowright as Viola and Ralph Richardson as Sir
Toby were quite wonderful. Henry Raynor, the TIMES reviewer, was on July 14,
1970 also naive enough to call Plowright's Viola "magical." Perhaps, as I think
Viola herself, said "O time, thou must untangle this, not I,/ It is too hard a
knot for me t'untie" (TN 2.2.40). Yours for more cakes and ale, Ken Rothwell
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Andre G. Bourassa <
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Date:           Saturday, 11 Mar 95 14:54:46 EST
Subject: 6.0195  Re: Black Characters on Shakespeare's Stage
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0195  Re: Black Characters on Shakespeare's Stage
 
In _Harper's Weekly_, 1st Septembre 1883, p. 556, there is a full page etching
of black clowns playing what seems to be a parody of _Hamlet_. The subtitle
reads: "The English Mania for Private Theatricals Invades Blackville. - Drawn
by Sol Eytinge, Jun."
 
I found that in an antique shop of Charleston and do not know where that paper
is from. There is an article about a summer place called Long Branch, close to
New York, on the reverse side, p. 555. I do not know either if the designer,
showing what seems to be Hamlet in front of his father's ghost, is mocking
white English actors, or mocking black amateurs in a parody of white actors.
The scene is quite sophisticated and my American friends, to whom I showed it,
couldn't tell if it was politically correct or not because, not knowing the
etcher nor the paper, we couldn't see who was mocking whom.
 
Andre G. Bourassa

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(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Milla Riggio <
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Date:           Saturday, 11 Mar 1995 22:39:29 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 6.0195  Re: Black Characters on Shakespeare's Stage
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0195  Re: Black Characters on Shakespeare's Stage
 
In response to the query about "an actual African-American in Shakespeare's
troupe": I'd doubt there was an American of any ilk, African or otherwise.  How
political correctness can do us in now and then.
 
Milla Riggio
 

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