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Home :: Archive :: 2000 :: December ::
Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 11.2311  Wednesday, 12 December 2000

[1]     From:   Mike Jensen <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 12 Dec 2000 10:02:45 -0800
        Subj:   SHK 11.2304 Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries

[2]     From:   Tanya Gough <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 12 Dec 2000 12:42:25 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.2304 Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries

[3]     From:   Hal Tynan <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 12 Dec 2000 13:23:17 -0700
        Subj:   Thanks on ShakesPEER Recommends - Part II

[4]     From:   Mary Jane Miller <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 12 Dec 2000 16:47:06 -0800
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.2304 Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries

[5]     From:   Jack Heller <
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        Date:   Tuesday, 12 Dec 2000 20:52:45 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 11.2304 Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Mike Jensen <
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Date:           Tuesday, 12 Dec 2000 10:02:45 -0800
Subject: Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries
Comment:        SHK 11.2304 Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries

Volpone is available on video, if you can understand it.  I'll explain.

It was filmed in France in a year I don't remember, probably the 50s.  I
bought a copy from Video Yesteryear.  The film is in French, a language
I do not speak.  It was filmed in black and white and has white
subtitles.  So many of the titles can not be read against the white back
ground that even though I have read the play three times, I still could
not follow the action.  It was a very frustrating experience.

Video Yesteryear does not list it in their on-line catalog
(http://www.yesteryear.com/video.htm), but it was in the last printed
catalog I saw, perhaps four years ago.

I'd give you my copy, but I already gave it to a friend.  Come to think
of it, here is the perfect opportunity to plug my friend's book.  His
name is Walter Martin, and he translated the complete Baudelaire for
Carcanet.  Check it out.

All the best,
Mike Jensen

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Tanya Gough <
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Date:           Tuesday, 12 Dec 2000 12:42:25 -0500
Subject: 11.2304 Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.2304 Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries

>Could anyone tell me if audio-cassettes (or videos) of any plays by
>Shakespeare's contemporaries (apart from The Duchess of Malfi which I
>have in audio) are available? If not, why not?! Especially 'Volpone' and
>'The Spanish Tragedy' would surely be viable products?

You would think so, yes, but such materials are generally thought (among
the powers that be in the retail industry) to be largely education in
purpose, which makes them a specialty item.  Frankly, most audiobook
companies consider the non-Shakespeare titles to be too risky, not well
known enough and not profitable enough to make the effort and incur the
costs associated with bringing a book or play to life on audio.  The
audiobook market is already a niche market, and don't forget that the
folks who make these tapes have to know who Marlowe, Kid, or Webster are
before they can make a tape of their plays.  Shakespeare is a much safer
bet, recognized by both producers and potential customers, and much more
likely to be used in a widespread classroom setting.  I know it stinks,
but it's how our economy works.

>On a more
>exasperated note, I wonder why CDs are often sold with thick booklets in
>3 languages while videos (of Shakespeare productions for example) do not
>so much as give you a cast-list or proper information about the date of
>the production.

We're talking about two separate industries here.  The music and book
industries have traditionally been closely related.  If you buy an
opera, they give you the libretto to follow along.  If you go to a
concert, you receive a detailed programme with all the information on
the production.  The film industry has always been treated differently,
at least in North America.  While in Japan you may buy or receive a full
film programme at the cinema, the US and Canada don't treat film as an
"event."  Also, it is assumed that you will be able to find whatever
information you require in the film credits, so printed credits are
deemed redundant.  These practices have carried over to the audiobook
and video industries.

Tanya Gough
Poor Yorick - Shakespeare Multimedia Catalogue
http://www.bardcentral.com

[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Hal Tynan <
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Date:           Tuesday, 12 Dec 2000 13:23:17 -0700
Subject:        Thanks on ShakesPEER Recommends - Part II

My thanks also to PHYLLIS, JACK, STEPHANIE AND JILL for their helpful
recommendations on the playwright contemporaries of Shakespeare. What a
powerful and helpful group of folks!

I see a lot of the same names that you all and others have graciously
contributed, including ones I 'd never heard before - Ford, Massinger,
Marsten, Volpone, Chapman.....

Phyllis and Jack - you both mentioned S "in context" - that's exactly
what I was looking for. Who was influenced by S and in turn who
influenced S, and did their writings change because of the influences. I
agree that would be a fascinating exploration. I know S was influenced
by Marlowe - some say haunted by him in the early years.

Jack - yes, a collected edition of the best of S contemporaries would be
would be a good seller, I think. I'm surprised it hasn't been done
before, given the recent upsurge in Shakespeare movies.

Thanks, Jill - that's at least two highlights for D'Ambois - interesting
- I'll have to check into that.

And I agree, Stephanie - "nothing comes close to Shakespeare" - but it's
fun to explore and be inspired by other great writings.

Thanks, Hal

[4]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Mary Jane Miller <
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Date:           Tuesday, 12 Dec 2000 16:47:06 -0800
Subject: 11.2304 Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.2304 Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries

The CBC did a wonderful Duchess of Malfi in the early 60s, which I saw
when doing research on CBC television drama, my primary area of study.
It stars Frances Highland, Douglas Rain as Bosola and Lloyd Bochner as
Duke Ferdinand for those of you who were familiar with Stratford Ont in
the late 50s and early 60s.  It was adapted and directed by one of the
best CBC producer/directors of the time - Mario Prizek, in , of course,
black and white. The kinescope has been deposited at the National
Archives of Canada. The CBC is finally marketing some of its more
current material. If enough people wrote to (why not) CBC President
R.Rabinovitch,  CBC Box 500 Station A Toronto M5W  1E6 such letters
might get the CBC thinking about its considerable resources.

Mary Jane

[5]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Jack Heller <
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Date:           Tuesday, 12 Dec 2000 20:52:45 -0500
Subject: 11.2304 Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries
Comment:        Re: SHK 11.2304 Re: Shakespeare's Contemporaries

There is a video available of Middleton and Rowley's The Changeling.
It's the same production that used to run occasionally on the cable
Bravo station. It has a few well-known performers: Elizabeth McGovern as
Beatrice-Joanna, Bob Hoskins as DeFlores, and Hugh Grant as Beatrice's
preferred beloved (whose name escapes me just now). This production
omitted the asylum subplot, so it runs about 90 minutes. I don't
remember who markets this tape. I do remember that it is dreadfully
expensive, well over $100.

Jack Heller
 

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