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Home :: Archive :: 1998 :: May ::
Re: Gielgud on Audio and Video
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 9.0421  Tuesday, 5 May 1998.

[1]     From:   Matthew Gretzinger <
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        Date:   Monday, 04 May 1998 09:50:52 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 9.0408 Gielgud's Renaissance Lear

[2]     From:   Larry Weiss <
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        Date:   Monday, 04 May 1998 13:40:18 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 9.0400  Re: Gielgud on Audio and Video


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Matthew Gretzinger <
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Date:           Monday, 04 May 1998 09:50:52 -0400
Subject: 9.0408 Gielgud's Renaissance Lear
Comment:        Re: SHK 9.0408 Gielgud's Renaissance Lear

John Owen writes:

>Although this recording has its good points, not the least of which is
>that it is the only complete recording of Gielgud's Lear, I should
>insert a cautionary note. Gielgud's age is really beginning to show
>here, and his gurgling, spitty delivery can be difficult to listen to.
>Moreover, Branagh's Edmond is poorly performed, Derek Jacobi's King of
>France sports a really embarrassing and unnecessary French accent and
>some significant passages are unaccountably cut.

I thought that this production was based on a Folio Text, no?  Which
would account for the significant passages-missing, not cut.

I personally find this recording to be far superior to the Scofield
version, if only because I prefer Gielgud's music to Scofield's
drawn-out, stone-scraping-against-stone-"old King bull" Lear (no cut to
Scofield, the god, I just don't like that recording).  Also, if
Gielgud's age shows here, why not?  The heaven-sent voice is the same,
and I would think that a "ruined" greatness should serve Lear's turn
admirably.

Just another opinion!

-Matthew

p. s. I agree with Mr. Owen that the French dialect in which Mr. Jacobi
speaks his lines is most unfortunate.  I do think Mr. Branagh gets a bad
rap, though.  Ham has its good points, as well as its bad, and Mr. B.
should be lauded for bringing those points, both subtle and gross, to
our attention.

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Larry Weiss <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Monday, 04 May 1998 13:40:18 -0400
Subject: 9.0400  Re: Gielgud on Audio and Video
Comment:        Re: SHK 9.0400  Re: Gielgud on Audio and Video

Almost everyone seems to have forgotten that Gielgud played Cassius in
Mankiewiec's 1953 film of JC.  Also, he was Chorus in the BBC R&J.
 

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