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Home :: Archive :: 2004 :: August ::
Shakespeare-Politics References
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 15.1577  Tuesday, 24 August 2004

[1]     From:   David Evett <
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        Date:   Monday, 23 Aug 2004 12:01:56 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1568 Shakespeare-Politics References

[2]     From:   Larry Weiss <
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        Date:   Monday, 23 Aug 2004 14:57:11 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 15.1568 Shakespeare-Politics References


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           David Evett <
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Date:           Monday, 23 Aug 2004 12:01:56 -0400
Subject: 15.1568 Shakespeare-Politics References
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1568 Shakespeare-Politics References

 >I think one needs to be very careful in the characterization of a
 >soliloquy as a character talking to itself. There are very few instances
 >of characters talking to themselves; Romeo is one. There is no fourth
 >wall in Elizabethan Theatre, the actor and the audience are fully aware
 >of each other, and the actor has full permission to talk directly with
 >the audience. Questions asked in soliloquies are truly that, questions
 >to the audience on their thoughts. When played this way, even today,
 >they often evoke response.

If I've made this point in this way before, forgive me.  I got to see
the theatrical version of Peter Brook's *King Lear* in Boston in 1964.
Ian Richardson as Edmund delivered much of his first soliloquy sitting
on the stage apron with his legs dangling down, as a professor might sit
on the desk or table at the front of a classroom, chatting with the
audience, charming us, taking us into his confidence, making us, indeed,
his confidants, his accomplices, accessories before the fact,
effortlessly creating a context within which the idealism of Cordelia
and Kent and Gloucester could never finally thrive.  Like lots of things
about that production, It was revelatory.

David Evett

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Larry Weiss <
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Date:           Monday, 23 Aug 2004 14:57:11 -0400
Subject: 15.1568 Shakespeare-Politics References
Comment:        Re: SHK 15.1568 Shakespeare-Politics References

Questions asked in soliloquies are truly that, questions

 >to the audience on their thoughts. When played this way, even today,
 >they often evoke response.

When Mark Rylance played Hamlet at the Globe, he repeated the line "Am I
a coward?" as a question to the audience.  No one answered when I
attended, but I hope someone had the presence of mind to respond, "Ay,
and a villain"; thus leading to the next line: "Who calls me villain?"

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