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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: July ::
Q: "To be or not . . . " Speech
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0571.  Thursday, 20 July 1995.
From:           Edna Boris <
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Date:           Wednesday, 19 Jul 95 13:16:56 EDT
Subject:        "To Be" speech
For a C.R.A.S.S. panel presentation that I'm working on I'd like to know if
anyone has information on a Hamlet production in which Hamlet not only
overhears Polonius's plan to use Ophelia as a decoy (which Olivier does) but
then goes on to stage the "to be" speech as a calculated performance rather
than a personal exploration of suicide.  Derek Jacoby himself and then in
directing Kenneth Branagh had Ophelia present but with Hamlet seeming to be
genuinely considering suicide around and at her.  I'm looking for productions
in which Hamlet is aware of Claudius and Polonius as well as Ophelia.

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