Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 3, No. 327. Thursday, 19 November 1992.
Date: Thursday, 19 Nov 92 08:37:13 EST
Subject: SHREW Discussion (con't)
Comment: SHK 3.0326 SHREW Discussion (con't)
Regarding the Shrew, I've taught an undergraduate Shaxpr
course each of the last 50 semesters, sometimes omitting the
Shrew but always returning to it because it is so successful
in the classroom. It seems timeless--almost all the other
comedies flop or succeed among undergraduates, depending on
the mood of the time, current issues, hot topics (ignoring
the instructor's abilities for the moment)--but the Shrew is
always a hit. Only Hamlet can compare, in my experience.
This is remarkable to me, since the more I read and see the
Shrew, the less satisfactory it is (in contrast to virtually
all the other plays). It is obviously very successful in
raising sexual and social issues, but I can't think of
another play which ends in such a whimper (amidst the
apparent bang). Explanation?
On performances, a number of years back I saw a videotape of
a production by (I think) the San Francisco Ballet company,
with Mark Singer as Petruchio. It was outstanding (very
acrobatic) until Kate's final speech, which got stuck in
a quasi-ironic mire. Does anyone know where this tape
can be bought or rented?