2008

Stratford Festival Stage

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0631  Wednesday, 5 November 2008

[1] From:   Tanya Gough <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
     Date:   Sunday, 2 Nov 2008 19:44:47 -0500 (EST)
     Subt:   Stratford Festival Stage, Official Version

[2] From:   Gloria J Betcher <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
     Date:   Monday, 03 Nov 2008 15:42:01 -0600
     Subt:   Fwd: RE: Festival Theatre Stage


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       Tanya Gough <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Sunday, 2 Nov 2008 19:44:47 -0500 (EST)
Subject:    Stratford Festival Stage, Official Version

Here's the Stratford Festival's official statement on the changes to the 
Stratford stage.

http://www.stratfordbeaconherald.com/ArticleDisplay.aspx?e=1277390

Tanya Gough

[2]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:       Gloria J Betcher <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Monday, 03 Nov 2008 15:42:01 -0600
Subject:    Fwd: RE: Festival Theatre Stage

Those of you who had planned to write in protest of the planned destruction of 
the Tanya stage at Stratford, might want to read the response from the Festival 
Administrators below, forwarded by a colleague at VMI. You may still choose to 
lodge a complaint, but you would be doing it with more information than the 
article from the Stratford Gazette supplied. The response below will especially 
appeal to those of you who want to learn more about the evolution of the Tanya 
Moiseiwitsch thrust stage from Guthrie's conception of it to the present.

Gloria Betcher

 >From: David Prosser [mailto:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.]
 >Sent: Monday, November 03, 2008 2:22 PM
 >To: Baragona, Alan
 >Subject: Festival Theatre stage
 >
 >Dear Professor Baragona:
 >
 >Thank you for your e-mail of November 2 , to which I have been asked to
 >reply.
 >
 >Please be assured that there is no truth whatsoever to the absurd rumour
 >that we plan to replace the Festival Theatre's famed stage with some kind of
 >proscenium-arch arrangement. The Tanya Moiseiwitsch thrust stage is the
 >embodiment of a brilliant idea - one that has proven itself over and over
 >again to be ideal for Shakespeare and astonishingly versatile for all kinds
 >of other repertoire as well - and we would be insane to do away with it.
 >
 >It is true that we continue to seek ways of improving the stage and its
 >facilities - as we have done throughout the past 55 years. Tyrone Guthrie
 >himself (our first artistic director) was among the first to anticipate  -
 >and approve - the idea of future changes. "Detailed modifications and
 >improvements will be made to our stage and particularly to our auditorium,"
 >he wrote after our first season in 1953. "We were all aware, I know, of
 >deficiencies."
 >
 >The evolution began in 1954, when, in accordance with a suggestion from Alec
 >Guinness (the star of our first season), the stage was deepened by
 >two-and-a-half feet. Far more substantial changes followed in 1962, when
 >then artistic director Michael Langham had the back wall rebuilt to
 >accommodate his staging of Romeo and Juliet (and also to make the stage feel
 >more "masculine"). Two balconied windows originally included in the wall
 >were removed, the side entrances were moved farther apart and the onstage
 >staircases rearranged, and additional upstage entrances were created by
 >means of new hinged wall panels.
 >
 >The nine pillars that had supported the onstage balcony were replaced by
 >five thicker ones, a trapdoor was installed in the balcony floor, and the
 >entire balcony was raised by eight inches to sit on its own "island." The
 >overhanging canopies known as "eyebrows" were also installed at this time.
 >
 >Major changes were also made in 1974, at the instigation of artistic
 >director designate Robin Phillips. It was he who made the balcony removable
 >(something both his immediate predecessors had desired but had been unable
 >to accomplish), and it was he who installed the "Cymbeline floor," a
 >wrap-around addition that raises the topmost platform of the stage to the
 >same level as the "island" under the balcony. Nowadays, the stage is almost
 >never used without that floor.
 >
 >In short, the stage has already changed significantly from what our first
 >audiences saw in 1953. It is not even true, alas, that its oaken boards are
 >the same ones that Guinness trod, for the entire surface was replaced in
 >1959, when dry rot was discovered to have set in. The boards were replaced
 >again in 1962 as part of the Langham redesign, and the boards in the upstage
 >area, where water damage had occurred, were replaced for a third time during
 >the renovation of 1996-97. And this is to say nothing of the fact that
 >pieces of the stage are routinely replaced, from season to season, to repair
 >damage and normal wear and tear. Any claim that the actual fabric of the
 >stage is "original" and "historic" thus rests on doubtful foundations; what
 >matters is the concept that fabric embodies. And that concept will not
 >change, for all the excellent reasons you articulate in your e-mail.
 >
 >The Festival stage, like any working stage, has evolved to meet the changing
 >needs of changing times, and to accommodate artistic and technical
 >innovations. It will certainly continue to do so - indeed, must do so in
 >order to keep pace with the demands and expectations of the audiences of
 >today and tomorrow. If we did not embrace new ideas and opportunities, we
 >would very soon cease to be a living theatre and would become a museum. But,
 >to repeat, we have no intention of doing away with the basic design that has
 >served us so well for more than half a century.
 >
 >At present, we are again considering what we need to do to enhance the
 >Festival experience for our audiences and maximize the opportunities for our
 >artists. Specifically, we are studying the theatre's acoustics and lighting,
 >as well as the spaces above and below the stage. If we can find better ways
 >of "flying" in scenic elements, and if we can enlarge the existing trap in
 >the stage floor, then we will immensely increase the flexibility of the
 >stage without in any way changing its essential character.
 >
 >All of this is still some years in the future. We are far from having a
 >"plan" at this point; we are still in the study phase. When a plan does
 >begin to take shape, however, one thing will be certain: it will have been
 >arrived at by a process of consultation with those who know the theatre best
 >and have its best interests at heart, and it will fully respect the
 >principles of the open thrust stage as developed by Guthrie, Moiseiwitsch
 >and Langham.
 >
 >On behalf of everyone here, please accept my warmest for caring so deeply
 >about the future of our theatre. If I can do anything further to set your
 >mind at rest, please do not hesitate to contact me.
 >
 >Yours sincerely,
 >--
 >David Prosser
 >Director of Literary Services
 >
 >Stratford Shakespeare Festival
 >North America's Leading Classical Theatre
 >55 Queen Street | PO Box 520 | Stratford ON | N5A 6V2
 >
 >Toll Free 1.800.561.1233 | 519.271.0055 x2304


_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the opinions 
expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the editor assumes no 
responsibility for them.

Blackfriars Theatre Floorplans

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0630  Wednesday, 5 November 2008

From:       Ina Centaur <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Sunday, 2 Nov 2008 19:21:34 -0800
Subject:    Blackfriars Theatre Floorplans

While I can find many floorplans, diagrams, and estimates of dimensions (many 
due to C. W. Hodges)  of the original Globe Theatre(s) that stood in 
Shakespeare's days, it seems much more difficult to find information about the 
Blackfriars Theatre. I'm wondering if anyone might be able to point me to books, 
journals, or other references that may shed light on the historical consensus of 
what the original Blackfriars might have "looked" like, or perhaps send me 
scans, or perhaps detailed photography of the current Blackfriars Theatre.

Thanks,
Ina Centaur

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the opinions 
expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the editor assumes no 
responsibility for them.

Region, Religion and Early Modern Literature (UK)

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0628  Wednesday, 5 November 2008

From:       Coleman, David <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Monday, 3 Nov 2008 12:41:14 -0000
Subject:    Region, Religion and Early Modern Literature (UK): Postgraduate 
Travel Bursaries Available

Region, Religion and Early Modern Literature: A One-Day Conference
Institute of English Studies, University of London
2 April 2009

Keynote Speakers: Tom Healy, Willy Maley

Confirmed Speakers include: Rebecca Bailey, Francisco J. Borge, Jan Frans van 
Dijkhuizen, Helen Hackett

Thanks to the generous support of the Society for Renaissance Studies, a number 
of postgraduate travel bursaries are available for postgraduates wishing to 
participate in this event. Preference will be given to those postgraduates 
speaking at the conference; to this end, the conference organiser is 
republishing the CFP (see below), and interested postgraduate students are 
requested to submit a proposal by 28 November 2008. Further information is 
available from the conference organiser.

Call For Papers: The first decade of the twenty-first century has witnessed an 
explosion of interest in religious texts and communities among scholars of early 
modern literature. While this is in part a reaction to global politics - 
religious politics have been in the media spotlight for the best part of the 
decade - the intensity of the interest also derives from more local concerns, 
from a professional dissatisfaction with the failure of earlier generations of 
historicist critics to illuminate fully the relationship between religion and 
literature in the early modern period.

This one-day conference aims to build on this renewed interest in early modern 
religion, to explore the significance of 'regional' religious and/or textual 
communities in early modern Britain and Ireland. Papers are sought which address 
the conference themes, although contributions will be particularly welcome which 
focus on any of the following: the development of sectarian identities and/or 
religious intolerance; the relationship between the 'religious' and the 
'secular'; the network of discourses surrounding religion, ethnicity and culture 
which emerge in the early modern period and/or their links with contemporary 
issues; the regional context of both canonical writers and lesser-known texts 
and communities; the political/intellectual implications of critical/historical 
methodology.

250-300 word proposals should be sent to the conference organiser by 28 November 
2008.

Conference Organiser: Dr David Coleman, School of Arts and Humanities, 
Nottingham Trent University, UK (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.)

Enquiries: Jon Millington, Events Officer, Institute of English Studies, Senate 
House, Malet Street, London WC1 7HU; tel +44 (0) 207 664 4859; email 
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Dr David Coleman
Lecturer in Early Modern Literature
Nottingham Trent University, UK

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the opinions 
expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the editor assumes no 
responsibility for them.

Shakespeare on YouTube Collection

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0627  Wednesday, 5 November 2008

From:       Eve-Marie Oesterlen <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Tuesday, 4 Nov 2008 15:59:07 +0000
Subject:    Shakespeare on YouTube Collection

I have just received the following announcement from Dr Luke McKernan  (see 
below) and thought it would be of interest to list members.

Regards,
Eve Oesterlen
---

For little while now, I've been collecting examples of original Shakespeare 
videos on YouTube. This is not YouTube as a distributor of clips (legally or 
illegally) from DVDs, TV programmes etc, but YouTube as a place where a new kind 
of moving image Shakespeare is emerging.

Of course there's a huge amount of seeming trivia to wade through. There are 
currently 33,900 videos on YouTube if you type in 'Shakespeare', and aside from 
the recycled material, there is a huge amount of local stage productions filmed 
with shaky camera in the stalls, school projects, failed audition videos, 
in-jokes, juvenilia, and painfully po-faced readings.

But dig deeper, and gems emerge. I've been seeking out animations, mashups, the 
best of student projects, intriguing audition pieces, and so forth, describing 
them, identifying credits, categorising them  by play and type of production, 
and putting them on a website (really a blog), which I have named BardBox. And 
here it is:

http://bardbox.wordpress.com/

This is just the start of the exploration. So far I have focussed on a 
particular type of original work, and looked for what I think is the best or 
most interesting. But what I am discovering is that usual notions of good or bad 
don't really apply. There is a new kind of audiovisual Shakespeare production 
emerging here, not a mere repetition of the old - new as in who is able to 
create such content, new in the reasons for doing so, new in the techniques 
applied, new in the audience for whom such productions are intended, new in the 
criteria by which success may be measured.

I'll continue adding examples (there are only 60 so far, and I've not even 
covered every play yet), and will expand the investigation to include more of 
e-trailers, stage recordings, theatre promos, lectures etc, and to look beyond 
YouTube (when I can work out how to embed videos from other sources). I know 
people in our field are just  starting to look at the YouTube phenomenon, and I 
thought it would be  useful (or at least entertaining) to gather together a 
canon of  sorts. Do take a look, let me know what you think, add comments to the 
videos, and tell me your favourites if you'd like to see them added.

Finally, this is a separate endeavour to the BUFVC's Shakespeare database 
(http://www.bufvc.ac.uk/shakespeare), which I previously led. The criteria for 
that has been Shakespeare on film, television and radio, and though it records 
some online video production, it could not take on such a vast and 
rapidly-growing field as well (the BUFVC database has 6,000 titles, YouTube 
33,900 and rising).

Luke

****************************************************************

Dr Luke McKernan
Curator, Moving Image
British Library
96 Euston Road
London NW1 2DB
Tel: 020 7412 7442
Fax: 020 7412 7441
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Web: http://www.bl.uk

-- 
Eve-Marie Oesterlen
Broadcast Researcher
Shakespeare Project

British Universities Film & Video Council
77 Wells Street
London
W1T 3QJ

tel: 020 7393 1502
fax: 020 7393 1555
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
www.bufvc.ac.uk


_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the opinions 
expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the editor assumes no 
responsibility for them.

USA 08

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0627  Wednesday, 5 November 2008

From:       Duncan Salkeld <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:       Monday, 03 Nov 2008 23:24:22 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: 19.0626 USA 08
Comment:    Re: SHK 19.0626 USA 08

Brabantio: Thou art a villain.
Iago: You are a senator (Othello 1.i.117-8)

Iago's cynicism is easy. Imagine Othello as Duke: or Obama as Prez.

It's taken a while, but I'm so looking forward to seeing history change,

Duncan Salkeld
University of Illyria

[Editor's Note: I am sorry I was not able to get this post out earlier. The 
historical event has happened; and I, for one, am delighted and filled with a 
sense of hope and pride that I have not felt in a long time. My hope for my 
country is that my new president will govern in a manner that assists in healing 
some of the wounds that exist among peoples in this country and those around the 
world, transforming the United States in such a way that it regains the respect 
it once held among the nations of this fragile world. Filled with hope, Hardy]

_______________________________________________________________
S H A K S P E R: The Global Shakespeare Discussion List
Hardy M. Cook, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
The S H A K S P E R Web Site <http://www.shaksper.net>

DISCLAIMER: Although SHAKSPER is a moderated discussion list, the opinions 
expressed on it are the sole property of the poster, and the editor assumes no 
responsibility for them.

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