Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 5, No.737. Wednesday, 14 September 1994.
From:           Adrian Kiernander <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Wednesday, 14 Sep 1994 13:09:47 +1000 (EST)
Subject:        Re: Sal/Sol
I would like to make a plea for keeping all three roles. In a play where the
question of alterity and its threats and accommodations figure prominently, I
think it might be interesting for an audience to see the "central" white, male,
Christian characters surrounded by a kind of chorus of three figures who are
patently "the same" (as Antonio, Bassanio, Gratiano, but also as each other, in
name and actions/opinions). I'd be fascinated to see Salerio, Solanio AND
Salarino played something like identical triplets, sycophantically reinforcing
the dominant prejudices about Jews and other others. And if actors can stop
thinking about playing rounded, verisimilitudinous and psychologically deep
"characters", I can imagine three good performers having a ball in the roles
and making these apparently minor figures into a memorable feature of the
production and making the world of "Venice" into something disturbing and
uncomfortable without having to resort to Nazi uniforms or other useful but
perhaps heavy-handed devices.
Adrian Kiernander
Theatre Studies, University of New England

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