Information Please: Beerbohm Tree as Antony

 

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 23.0337  Thursday, 16 August 2012

 

From:        Kate Welch <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         August 14, 2012 4:50:35 AM EDT

Subject:     Information Please: Beerbohm Tree as Antony

 

>For the Broadview edition of Julius Caesar, I’d like to use the painting 

>(or is it a photograph?) of Herbert Beerbohm Tree playing Antony in 

>1898 at Her Majesty’s Theatre. For this purpose, I need a high-resolution

>image (1200 by 900 pixels). The best image I can find online is taken 

>from a post card with a much lower resolution.

>

>Does anyone know where the original painting or photograph is located?

 

Dear John,

 

If it’s the painting by Charles Buchel of Tree standing over Caesar’s corpse it is held at the V&A Museum in London – www.vam.ac.uk.

 

Kate Welch

Shakespeare Institute Library.

Images from the Dugdale Archive

 

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 23.0336  Wednesday, 15 August 2012

 

From:        Hardy M. Cook <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Subject:     Images from the Dugdale Archive 

 

SHAKSPER subscriber Joseph Egert obtained from the Dugdale Archive at Merevale Hall (UK) photographs of a Dugdale MS notebook page dated “1634” (Dugdale MS-Vol. VII-p.10), containing Dugdale’s handwritten transcriptions of the Holy Trinity Church epitaphs of (1) William Shakespeare, (2) his wife Anne (d.1623), (3) his daughter Susanna (d.1649), (4) his son-in-law John Hall (d.1635), and (5) his grandaughter’s husband Thomas Nashe (d.1647). These notes formed the basis of the printed versions on page 518 and 520 of Dugdale’s Antiquities of Warwickshire (1656). 

 

The Dugdale family representative has granted Egert permission to publish these facsimiles online, and he has chosen SHAKSPER as the place those images will reside. 

 

These images are From the Merevale Archives with the permission of Sir William Dugdale, who retains copyright. 

 

We all owe Dr. Egert and the Merevale Archives thanks for allowing SHAKSPER to distribute and archive these images. 

 

The images may be found at the Reference Files section under the Scholarly Resources tab at the SHAKSPER archive: http://shaksper.net/scholarly-resources/reference-files

 

The images from the Archive are followed by images from the 1656 Dugdale Antiquities of Warwickshire. Following these will be photographs I took of the Funerary Monument in Holy Trinity Church, which will be followed by a compilation file I composed of these and other related images. Hardy M. Cook, Editor. 

 

Compilation File:

 

pdf  William Shakespeare’s Funerary Monument

Anesthetic MACBETH?

 

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 23.0335  Monday, 13 August 2012

 

From:        Steve Urkowitz <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         August 13, 2012 10:55:51 AM EDT

Subject:     Anesthetic MACBETH?

 

Anesthetic effects of aesthetic directorial choices?

 

Last week I sat through a well-meaning but essentially emotion-free production of MACBETH.

 

Though the actors displayed a lot of technical mastery – they spoke clearly, moved well, and generally understood what they were saying – directorial “inventions” restricted emotional engagement between the actors and the audience.  Now, I recognize that for some people such empathic connection ain’t really wanted:  “You all stay on THAT side of the stage apron, and I stay on THIS side.  You all DO stuff, and I WATCH, but don’t you reach through the archway to grab me up close and personal.”  

 

The many varieties of “method acting” try to break through that barrier.  Many old-time acting styles from the Greeks to Uta Hagen also worked to make the audience feel along with the player, and the playwrights and their players disported any number of rhetorical and physical techniques (or tricks) to make the theatrical experience intensely felt.  Of course, emotionally evocative techniques require the same kinds of disciplines, intellectual analyses, and brick-by-brick learning championed by directorial regimes that celebrate intellectual experience over emotion in theater.  

 

But here’s an example of how ideas replaced emotions in this MACBETH.  Working to cut the play to a very-accelerated 70-minute playing time, and working with a cast of only 10 actors, this production left out along with much else the scene of the murders of Lady Macduff and household.  But then (perhaps in recompense?) a few moments later, when the Doctor delivers his report on Lady Macbeth “troubled with thick-coming fancies,” Macbeth immediately draws a knife, plunges it into the Doctor’s back, and slides quickly into his eloquent “Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow” revery.   Huh?  What prompted THIS unscripted murder?  Motiveless malignity?  Schizophrenic paranoia?  Sly references to recent mass killings by heavily armed psychopaths?  Makes you think, huh?  But like the numbing repetitions of the 24-hour news cycle, it sure interferes with letting you “feel” much along the way.  Those words and scenes of the full script are engines to make us feel intense sympathy with both the victims and the increasingly anesthetized Macbeth himself.  This short-cut production eliminated all emotional sympathy from the audience’s repertory of responses, leaving only a sense that there was something richly potential in the play that we’ll have to try finding at a more leisurely moment.

 

Could we instead try to bring back that risky emotional response in our theaters and (even in the sterilities from No-Child-Left-Behind to Deepest Deconstruction) our classrooms from grade- to graduate-schools..  That’s what I’ve worked on as a director (and textual scholar) for a long time, in venues from classrooms in Maine and the Bronx to Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center and La Fenice in Venice.  Though I get despondent drifting home after paper-towel-tasting productions like that MACBETH, I know there will be better, somewhere.  “Tell me about the rabbits, George.”

 

(Let me propose an evaluative criterion of something like “educated emotional evocation” that might be added to our critical toolboxes.  “Critic, tell me if you felt along with your understanding. And tell me how that feeling connects with other emotions you enjoy intensely.”)

 

Now I go off for some intense biking, upsy-downsing from our lake in the hills to sea-level at Damariscota Maine.

 

Steve Urfeelowitz

Summer in Jefferson ME

Digitizing Bodleian Library First Folio

 

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 23.0334  Monday, 13 August 2012

 

From:              Mario A. DiCesare <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:               August 3, 2012 4:12:51 PM EDT

Subject:           Digitizing Shakespeare

 

One of the enthusiastic people who has taken a couple of Shakespeare courses with me forwarded the following announcement. I don’t know where she came across it.

 

An Effort to Put First Edition of Shakespeare Online

By ROBIN POGREBIN

 

A campaign is under way to digitize and make available online the first collected edition of Shakespeare’s plays, known as the First Folio.

 

A cadre of celebrities – including the actors Vanessa Redgrave and Stephen Fry and the theater director Peter Hall – are championing the fund-raising effort by the Bodleian Library at the University of Oxford, “Sprint for Shakespeare,” which started this week. The campaign aims to raise £20,000 (about $31,000) through private contributions.

 

Once online, the folio will be available free, accompanied by articles and blogs from academics, other specialists, theater professionals and the public.

 

While copies of the book are not uncommon, the Bodleian’s First Folio is rare because it has not been rebound or restored in the almost four centuries since it first entered the library late in 1623. Its marks reveal the tastes of early readers; the pages of “Romeo and Juliet” are worn almost to shreds, while “King John” is virtually pristine. The volume, which was apparently sold by the library in the 1660’s, returned after a public fund-raising campaign at the turn of the 20th century to buy it from the family that owned it.

 

Oxford will be marking the 400th anniversary of Shakespeare’s death in 2016.

 

“The Shakespeare First Folio is the most important secular book in the history of the western world,” said Jonathan Bate, a Shakespeare scholar at Oxford. “The digitization of the Bodleian copy, with its strange and eventful history, is a great project.” 

 

Information Please: Beerbohm Tree as Antony

 

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 23.0333  Monday, 13 August 2012

 

From:        John Cox <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>

Date:         August 3, 2012 2:04:22 PM EDT

Subject:     Information Please: Beerbohm Tree as Antony

 

For the Broadview edition of Julius Caesar, I’d like to use the painting (or is it a photograph?) of Herbert Beerbohm Tree playing Antony in 1898 at Her Majesty’s Theatre. For this purpose, I need a high-resolution image (1200 by 900 pixels). The best image I can find online is taken from a post card with a much lower resolution.

 

Does anyone know where the original painting or photograph is located?

 

Thanks,

John Cox

 

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