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Home :: Archive :: 1997 :: August ::
Re: New Globe; Performance; Shrew
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 8.0861.  Tuesday, 19 August 1997.

[1]     From:   Richard A Burt <
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        Date:   Monday, 18 Aug 1997 08:27:17 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 8.0856  Re: New Globe

[2]     From:   Andrew Walker White <
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        Date:   Monday, 18 Aug 1997 20:39:59 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   The Yank Invasion; Andy Replies

[3]     From:   Tim Richards <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 19 Aug 1997 09:54:19 +0800
        Subj:   SHK 8.0855  Re: Performance

[4]     From:   Helen Robinson <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 19 Aug 1997 13:47:39 +1000 (EST)
        Subj:   SLY Scenes


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Richard A Burt <
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Date:           Monday, 18 Aug 1997 08:27:17 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: 8.0856  Re: New Globe
Comment:        Re: SHK 8.0856  Re: New Globe

In a recent issue of Shakespeare Survey , R. S. White has a useful essay
detailing Marx's use of Shakespeare.

Richard Burt

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Andrew Walker White <
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Date:           Monday, 18 Aug 1997 20:39:59 -0400 (EDT)
Subject:        The Yank Invasion; Andy Replies

My apologies, first of all; the server has been down for the better part
of a week, and I've had a couple drafts of my responses blown into the
ether before I could post them.

My thanks, first, to those of you who wrote me off-line.  Your replies
were quite welcome.

Mr. Egan:  You will be pleased to know that my reference to hooligans
was not a figment of my imagination.  The stoning of Wannamaker's house
in Southwark (funny, elitists usually don't live in run-down
neighborhoods, they stick to the swanky suburbs) is featured prominently
in an interview with Sam's daughter, which was published around the time
of the official opening.  I can try to find a citation, if you wish.
She recalls being horrified by the incident (a young person tends to
take attacks like this to heart) but her father took it in stride...

Mr. Drakakis:  I haven't been able to locate the book you cite; perhaps
you or others could post me a summary of what you found-off-list or on,
whichever you think is most appropriate.  I would especially be
interested to learn if by 'the wishes of the local populace', you mean
the wishes of certain self-appointed leaders.  Elitists come in more
than one stripe, and living near Washington, D.C. I have seen more than
one instance of a so-called leader claiming to stand up for the
downtrodden, without knowing or even caring what they actually wanted.
In addition, it would be interesting to know what alternatives the
Southwark authorities had, in terms of creating jobs and revitalizing a
neighborhood which had seen better days.

As for being "wholly dedicated to consumption", guilty as charged.  As
are the rest of us on this list, who certainly haven't shyed away from
purchasing computers with modems in order to be better consumers ... and
need I add that the gentleman whose works we discuss here worked as a
shareholder in a commercial entertainment concern?

Mr. Hawkes:  By all means, let's be sure to explore the context of
Shakespeare's and Wannamaker's actions.  But let's also understand at
the outset that we will continue to disagree as to motivations of these
persons.

Structuralism, etc., is fine by me, and I for one think that it's high
time we stopped putting these works on a pedestal, and analyze them as
the contemporary entertainment which they were designed to be.  Perhaps
that will be the best way to deflate the pretensions of those who push
these plays as 'superior' in any way.  They are great plays, not because
theyare superior, but because they simply work.  They have great drive
and intensity, and by reintroducing the context of an open-air,
broad-daylight playhouse, the full impact of these works can now finally
be explored.

This project is worthwhile precisely because even after the scholars are
done fussing over the thatching and such, it's the performers who will
either make it work or who will make this thing into a lime-and-plaster
white elephant.  As a performer, that's the aspect of it which thrills
me.

Andy White
Finally back On-line

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Tim Richards <
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Date:           Tuesday, 19 Aug 1997 09:54:19 +0800
Subject: Re: Performance
Comment:        SHK 8.0855  Re: Performance

John Owen wrote:

>Perhaps
>what I am getting at is that we expect the performer to try to
>communicate, to possess an awareness of the medium in use and the
>composition of the audience and be willing to adapt to these changing
>circumstances-not merely memorize some strange, symbolic language of
>recitation and bark it out on cue.

This is why I enjoy the BBC/Time-Life video recordings so little, and
Kenneth Branagh's films so much.  The BBC versions seem riddled with
what someone on the Shakespeare newsgroup called "terminal ingrown
reverence", leading to a lifeless, formalised performance with very
little passion.  Branagh's films, on the other hand, are full of
passion.  I don't always agree with his interpretations, but I think
it's clear that he loves the material and, in his own performances, has
a good grasp of its meaning and how to convey that to an audience.  He
certainly is aware of his medium and how to use it to best advantage to
reach the viewers.

Tim Richards.

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Helen Robinson <
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Date:           Tuesday, 19 Aug 1997 13:47:39 +1000 (EST)
Subject:        SLY Scenes

I have only just caught up with my mail as I have been directing The
Taming of the Shrew at the Genesian Theatre in Kent Street Sydney.

I was particularly interested in Stephen Miller's "Query about A SHREW"
dated Wednesday 6th August. I have included the Sly scenes at the
beginning of the play and borrowed the epilogue from "A Shrew" which I
modified slightly. The main play is staged as part of Sly's dream rather
than a play within a play.

Many people have commented that this framework has enabled them to make
more sense of  Kate's final speech.

The production runs 'till Saturday 4th October and performances are on
Friday and Saturday starting at 8 pm and on Sunday at 4.30.

The play is set in the 1920s.

Regards,
Helen Robinson
 

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