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Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: June ::
Re: Colorblindness
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.1350  Monday, 4 June 2001

[1]     From:   Geralyn Horton <
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        Date:   Monday, 04 Jun 2001 01:03:18 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1339 Re: Colorblindness

[2]     From:   Andrew W. White <
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        Date:   Monday, 4 Jun 2001 11:27:26 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.1339 Re: Colorblindness


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Geralyn Horton <
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Date:           Monday, 04 Jun 2001 01:03:18 -0400
Subject: 12.1339 Re: Colorblindness
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1339 Re: Colorblindness

>And, while I'm on the subject, I have to mention James Earl
>Jones' unforgettable King Lear at the same festival about twenty-five
>years ago, with Raul Julia as the most memorable Edmund I have ever
>seen.

I saw Jones as Claudius years and years ago -- he was excellent.

Geralyn Horton, Newton, Mass. 02460
<http://www.stagepage.org>

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Andrew W. White <
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Date:           Monday, 4 Jun 2001 11:27:26 -0400
Subject: 12.1339 Re: Colorblindness
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.1339 Re: Colorblindness

Edward Pixley writes:

"I wonder if anyone has seen a performance of Twelfth Night in which
Sebastian was played by a female actor. . ."

Here in Washington, D.C., there was an excellent production at the
Washington Shakespeare Company (a local group based in Arlington, VA,
not to be confused with Michael Kahn's outfit downtown).  The director,
Delia Taylor, cast two women who were about as like each other,
physically _and_ vocally, as you can do without casting twins.  The
effect was amazing: for the first time, you really couldn't tell the
twins apart.  Viola 'lowered' her voice when called upon to play
Caesario, and I can't tell you how much of a difference it made.  All
too often we're asked to accept a coloratura Viola as the exact double
of her bass-baritone brother, and no effort is made to keep the pitch of
voice at the same level.  There were other directorial strokes of
genius, but that's for another thread.

Having seen what happens when attention is paid to both the body _and_
voice of the twins, I am left to wonder why nobody else has bothered to
do this before.  It's easier for two women to match each others' voices
than for a man and woman to do so, and Ms. Taylor aside I haven't seen
any director who bothered with this vital bit of 'twinning.'

It works.

Cheers,
Andy White

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