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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: May ::
JC Music; Branagh; Aumerle; Dolabella; Sh&Co; Ending
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0358.  Wednesday, 3 May 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Eric Armstrong <
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        Date:   Monday, 1 May 1995 17:05:01 -0400
        Subj:   *JC* Music
 
(2)     From:   Christine Mack Gordon <
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        Date:   Monday, 1 May 95 16:14:06 -0500
        Subj:   SHK 6.0354 Branagh & Shakespeare
 
(3)     From:   Sam Gregory <
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        Date:   Monday, 1 May 1995 17:40:10 -0400
        Subj:   The York Family Feud
 
(4)     From:   W. L. Godshalk <
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        Date:   Monday, 01 May 1995 22:18:57 -0500 (EST)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 6.0352  Re: Cleopatra and Dollabella
 
(5)     From:   Diane Mountford <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 2 May 1995 23:48:04 -0400
        Subj:   Re: Shakespeare & Company
 
(6)     From:   Diane Mountford <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 3 May 1995 00:00:28 -0400
        Subj:   Re: The Ending of *King Lear*
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Eric Armstrong <
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Date:           Monday, 1 May 1995 17:05:01 -0400
Subject:        *JC* Music
 
Another brilliant thought on music for JC set in 2015:
 
2015 is 20 years from now. Well... it seems to me that a lot of the music I
hear today is 20 years old. With ABBA's big come back I don't see why you don't
use a healthy dose of "retro" music: grunge and the like! ;-)
 
I suggest you do the honorable thing - HIRE A MUSICIAN. They can create (live,
onstage even) new music that doesn't sound like anything you have heard before,
or like everything you have heard before, easy as cake. And with so many
starving-artist musicians around you could get one for... dare I say it, a
song.
 
Best of luck,
Eric.
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Christine Mack Gordon <
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Date:           Monday, 1 May 95 16:14:06 -0500
Subject: Branagh & Shakespeare
Comment:        SHK 6.0354 Branagh & Shakespeare
 
In response to Dave Kathman's query about what text Branagh would use for a
"complete" *Hamlet*--he has traditionally worked from the various Arden
editions of the plays according to information I've gleaned from various
sources. Uma Thurman as Desdemona? Oy.
 
Chris Gordon
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Sam Gregory <
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Date:           Monday, 1 May 1995 17:40:10 -0400
Subject:        The York Family Feud
 
Hi all,
 
This is my first post to the SHAKSPER Discussion group although I've been
*lurking* for several weeks.  I saw a post several weeks ago which included
some information regarding Aumerle's scene towards the end of Richard II.
Aumerle and his mother beg for his life, while York wants him to die. I had the
good fortune to perform Aumerle last year and would love to read any papers
concerning the comic nature of this scene.  I seem to recall that at least one
of you had written a paper on this very topic.  Please Email me directly at
<
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 > or respond to me here.
 
In closing, I'd like to add that the scene almost always brought the house
down.  The audience really seems to need a little comic relief at that point in
the play and Mr. Shakespeare provides it. The release of tension comes right
before Richard's final monologue and death scene. I look forward to reading
more about this fascinating scene.
 
Thanks in advance,
Sam Gregory

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(4)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           W. L. Godshalk <
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Date:           Monday, 01 May 1995 22:18:57 -0500 (EST)
Subject: 6.0352  Re: Cleopatra and Dollabella
Comment:        Re: SHK 6.0352  Re: Cleopatra and Dollabella
 
I would like to point out that Don Foster's intriguing account of ANTONY AND
CLEOPATRA 5.1 does not completely solve the problem. In fact, it doesn't solve
the problem at all. If Dolabella leaves the stage at line 3, he has a mission
to go to Antony and bid him yield. Decretas enters and reports that Antony is
dead. Dolabella has been sent on a sleeveless errand. But Caesar claims at the
end of the scene to remember how "hee's imployd: he shall in time be ready."
 
Why question is "ready for what"? Well, in the next scene Dolabella relieves
Proculeius -- the man Antony told Cleopatra to trust. In fact, for dramatic
economy, why bring in Proculeius at all?  Why not have Dolabella capture
Cleopatra? And why, if Dolabella is going to bid Antony to yield, why does he
show up at Cleoaptra's place and tell Proculeius that Caesar knows what he has
done and "hath sent for thee"? Maybe. Maybe we are not supposed to question the
apparent incongruity.
 
Concerning Plutarch and other of Shakespeare's sources, we know that he was not
bound by history and the historians. Tedious it were to detail all the ways he
changed English history to serve his dramatic desires. Let Hotspur stand as
example. I suggest that Shakespeare rewrote Plutarch in this play, and if you
reread all of Plutarch's account of Antony you will see what I mean.
 
My apologies to Queen Elizabeth I if I maligned her by squeezing a complex
historical episode into a few lines. Political necessity may not exclude human
emotion.
 
I am obviously NOT claiming that my account of Dolabella is inevitable. I would
say that most people who bother to listen to my description of Dolabella's role
find it -- well -- not inevitable, and directors of the play have been doing
nicely without it for, I suppose, hundreds of years.
 
But I think it is an interesting possibility. Obviously no court in our nation
would convict Dolabella on the evidence that I can adduce, but there are a few
hints in the play that Dolabella is NOT one of the traitors. All the other
traitors in the play leave their masters or mistresses. Dolabella alone is
rewarded for his apparent betrayal of Caesar.
 
No, it's not nice, not pretty. It's very bleak indeed. It's called real
politics.
 
Cynically, Bill Godshalk
 
(5)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Diane Mountford <
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Date:           Tuesday, 2 May 1995 23:48:04 -0400
Subject:        Re: Shakespeare & Company
 
Okay, I must jump into the fray with one more post about the Shakespeare &
Company and EST question.
 
I participated in a Shakespeare & Company intensive and summer training program
in 1990, and came home a significantly better person. For me it was <a
humanistic self-discovery process>, which has enriched my life and my work
hundredfold.
 
My experience with the "tough-it-out" approach had much more to do with
emotional blocks than physical injuries. I know for myself that when I run into
a big emotional issue, I try my best to evade it, and the teachers at the
workshop were rather relentless about making me face my demons. At the same
time, however, I learned how to take care of myself as an actor, both
physically and emotionally, to keep myself safe and give myself the space to be
dangerous.  I imagine that the incident of the injured student being told to
"tough-it-out" was a matter of a teacher confusing the person's physical
condition with an emotional one (a grave mistake to be sure, but not in my
experience a common one).
 
As far as the connection with "est" goes, I never heard mention of it until now
(I've heard a lot about the University of Deleware program in that light, but
not S&Co). We used to joke about S&Co being kind of cultish, what with the
self-inflicted sleep deprivation, emotionally and physically taxing program,
and the setting up of Tina Packer as some sort of god (by those who felt the
need to worship, not by me). But I've never heard of a cult that preaches, not
conformity, but independent thought; a cult that teaches an actor how to dive
into herself and find an endless font of creativity and inspiration.
 
It is not a program for everyone, I'm sure, but my experience there was nothing
if not a revolution of the soul.
 
Cheers,
Diane Mountford
 
(6)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Diane Mountford <
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Date:           Wednesday, 3 May 1995 00:00:28 -0400
Subject:        Re: The Ending of *King Lear*
 
Robert Knapp suggests that King Lear's "Look on her! look! her lips! Look
there, look there!" means that Lear believes that Cordelia is still alive.
Altough I certainly don't argue with this as an interpretation, I just thought
I'd throw out an alternate one from Tony Church.
 
I had the good fortune to study with Tony in London a few years back and one
day in class he showed us how he plays the final moments of Lear's life. In his
opinion the finality of "never, never, never, never, never" wiped out any hope
of Cordelia being alive. So on the "look there" lines, he picked up Cordelia's
body and showed her to the audience. It was quite a chilling moment of theater!
 
Cheers,
Diane
 

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