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Home :: Archive :: 1998 :: May ::
Re: Elizabethan Staging
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 9.0468  Friday, 15 May 1998.

[1]     From:   Justin Bacon <
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        Date:   Tuesdayyy, 12 May 1998 23:39:10 -0700
        Subj:   Elizabethan Staging

[2]     From:   Ildiko Solti <
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        Date:   Friday, 15 May 1998 05:07:15 -0700 (PDT)
        Subj:   Elizabethan Staging


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Justin Bacon <
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Date:           Tuesdayyy, 12 May 1998 23:39:10 -0700
Subject:        Elizabethan Staging

Richard Dutton wrote:

> The intriguing question remains: if piracy was not, in fact, the threat
> it has often been claimed to be, why did some acting companies have
> reservations about allowing *some* of their plays into print - 'think it
> against their peculiar profit to have them come in print', as Heywood
> put it in the Epistle to 'The English Traveller' (1633). I had a stab at
> this question in an essay called 'The Birth of the Author' included in
> both 'Elizabethan Theater', ed Parker and Zitner (1996) and (somewhat
> revised) in 'Texts and Cultural Change in Early Modern England' ed.
> Brown and Maiotti (1997). But I'd welcome any further views.

I am afraid I must profess ignorance of your work in this field, but let
me offer a relatively uninformed hypothesis. Today we believe that
simply reading a play and actually going to see the play are two
completely different things.  Would the same hold true for Elizabethans?

We already know that they did not *see* a play, they *heard* a play.
Hearing words and reading words are very closely related. Might it be
that Elizabethan audiences-having read a play-would not go to see the
play?

Even if such were not true, would it be possible for producers such as
Heywood to *believe* it to be true-and therefore prevent the publication
of their plays in order to preserve the theatrical profits?

Justin Bacon

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[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ildiko Solti <
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Date:           Friday, 15 May 1998 05:07:15 -0700 (PDT)
Subject:        Elizabethan Staging

Dear Mr. Longstaffe,

Thanks very much for your remarks about playing Petruchio. This kind of
"direct" contact with the audience is my favourite. We're going to play
in the open-air courtyard of a historic building, complete with a tree
and a well. The building itself is going to be the set, with three
entrances and windows to talk from. We'll play to three sides, with the
audience mostly on our right and left, slightly raised.  Could you
perhaps mention some of the traps you encountered in the role or the
play? What was your interpretation? Who was the winner in this game and
how did you feel about it?

Thanks again
Ildiko Solti
 

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