2003

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 14.0943  Wednesday, 14 May 2003

From:           Charles Weinstein <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Tuesday, 13 May 2003 19:55:47 -0400
Subject:        Top One

The great lost performance of our time is Olivier's Macbeth (1955), of
which there is no audio or visual record other than a few posed Angus
McBean photographs.  Olivier was to have filmed it, but the financing
fell through.  As a result, I have never seen a satisfying performance
of Macbeth, a statement unmodified by my having seen McKellen and Sher.
To compensate, I have read everything that I can find about Olivier's
performance, and I even once interviewed a member of the 1955 production
crew.  But recreation in the mind's eye is a poor substitute for
reality, just as today's reality is a poor substitute for Olivier.

--Charles Weinstein

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