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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: October ::
Actors' Additions
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.2335  Friday, 12 October 2001

From:           W. L. Godshalk <
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Date:           Thursday, 11 Oct 2001 15:12:50 -0400
Subject:        Actors' Additions

Irace, Jenkins, and others suggest that in the early modern period
actors' additions or interpolations were added to the playscript.  Words
like "well," "by heaven," "I can tell you," "my lord," and "O" when
interpolated into the play by actors were then actually written into the
text (by someone) where they are preserved for contemporary scholars to
identify. I find this hard to believe. Would anyone take time to add
these words to the book of the play as well as the separate rolls?

But one of my graduate students (in the Theatre Department) tells me
that her director does precisely this.  If an actor inadvertently adds
words to his role, these words are added to the script.

Is this common practice.

Yours, Bill Godshalk

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