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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: April ::
Qs: Fighting Words; Oral Stage Tradition
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0308.  Monday, 17 April 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Daniel L. Colvin <
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        Date:   Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 14:46:00 -0500 (CDT)
        Subj:   Fighting words
 
(2)     From:   Ken Colston <
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        Date:   Sunday, 16 Apr 1995 18:46:17 -0400
        Subj:   Oral Stage Tradition
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Daniel L. Colvin <
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Date:           Saturday, 15 Apr 1995 14:46:00 -0500 (CDT)
Subject:        Fighting words
 
The fight director for our production of Macbeth has asked me to come up with
some "ad libs" for characters to say at various parts of the play, especially
big fights.  I could use help from SHAKSPEReans in two ways:
 
1.      If you have any wonderful words/phrases/insults/etc. to suggest,
        please let me know.
 
2.      I seem to recall seeing an advertisement for a book (I think
        published by a British press) which dealt with Shakespearean
        curses and similar matters -- a kind of collection from the
        plays.  Do any of you know of such a book?
 
Thanks for any help you can give.
 
Dan Colvin
Western Illinois University

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(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ken Colston <
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Date:           Sunday, 16 Apr 1995 18:46:17 -0400
Subject:        Oral Stage Tradition
 
Does an oral stagecraft tradition for any of Shakespeare's plays (passed on
from generation to generation of theater types) exist that might reach back to
his time and thus shed light on original/early interpretation?  Or have there
been too many interruptions lasting several generations?  Is there any
scholarship in this area?  For example, I understand that by tradition Act I
Scene ii of Henry IV, Part 1 is set in an Eastcheap apartment belonging to
Prince Hal.  Nothing in the text confirms this.  Where would such a tradition
originate?  This is only one simple example from a play I'm reading with a
high-school class.  I'd be interested to hear what SHAKSPERians know about the
oral tradition.
 

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