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Home :: Archive :: 1998 :: May ::
Re: Intercultural Performances
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 9.0409  Friday, 1 May 1998.

[1]     From:   Alexandra Gerull <
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        Date:   Thursday, 30 Apr 1998 14:51:05 +0000
        Subj:   Intercultural Performances 2

[2]     From:   John McWilliams <
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        Date:   Thursday, 30 Apr 1998 14:30:46  +0100
        Subj:   Re: SHK 9.0401  Re: Intercultural Performances

[3]     From:   Laura Fargas <
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        Date:   Thursday, 30 Apr 1998 11:45:14 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 9.0401  Re: Intercultural Performances


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Alexandra Gerull <
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Date:           Thursday, 30 Apr 1998 14:51:05 +0000
Subject:        Intercultural Performances 2

In reply to Harry Hill:

Despite the different accents and cultural backgrounds of the RSC
actors  there seems to be a very stable and unifying approach to voice
training and consequently use of voice in performance at work in these
productions. I would argue that the tensions and challenges of
interculturalism is not at the heart of the RSC' s work.

As to the term "interracial": How would you define that in contrast to
intercultural in regard to theatrical work? Is an American production
with a mixed cast an interracial or a intercultural one, or both ?

Right now, I'm more interested in "complete" transfer, for example how
is Shakespeare performed in Japan? What are the strategies in
transferring a Shakespearean play into the form of a Peking opera (
which has been done)? Nevertheless, I think there is a difference in
quality between mise-en-scenes that employ elements of culturally
different theatrical traditions merely as exotic embellishment and those
which are aiming at a true communication between source and target
culture which may very well be impossible.

And, I think this has less to do with PC than with something I can only
describe as a search for the holy grail ( possibly something that
results in completely incorrect forms of appropriation).  Thanks to Ed
Taft and Andrew Murphy (Alternative Shakespeares 2 has been sitting on
my shelves unread for months).

Alexandra Gerull

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           John McWilliams <
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Date:           Thursday, 30 Apr 1998 14:30:46  +0100
Subject: 9.0401  Re: Intercultural Performances
Comment:        Re: SHK 9.0401  Re: Intercultural Performances

> If he means John Barton's not minding Texas accents when he directed
> Shakespeare there, then I would say all power to any production that is
> true to the cultural mix in the text.

Speaking of which - in the Alex Jenning's Hamlet I just posted about,
during the play within a play scene, Hamlet sometimes put on an
over-the-top 'have a nice day' type American accent. It worked
brilliantly: it was both funny and quite scary as when you're not quite
sure whether someone's joking or not.

John McWilliams
Cambridge

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Laura Fargas <
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Date:           Thursday, 30 Apr 1998 11:45:14 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: 9.0401  Re: Intercultural Performances
Comment:        Re: SHK 9.0401  Re: Intercultural Performances

This is a bit old, and it's on film, but since it looks at East/West
issues through the lens of a troupe playing Shakespeare out in the
provincial boonies in India, it might be worth your attention:  a film
called "Shakespeare Wallah."

Laura Fargas
 

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