The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.2695  Thursday, 29 November 2001

From:           Markus Marti <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 29 Nov 2001 00:37:45 +0100
Subject: 12.2683 Re: My Old Brain is Troubled
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.2683 Re: My Old Brain is Troubled

> A consistently blank response from a puzzled audience, plus a refusal to
> respond adequately to jokes and comic routines is certainly very
> disturbing. John Ciccarelli's report that 'we were amazed that at times
> some of our visual gags didn't go over well' confirms this extremely
> worrying trend amongst irresponsible theatre-goers. It's obviously right
> that such amazing developments should raise the issue of why the Bard
> seems no longer to be central to a stubbornly ungrateful culture. Here,
> at the Critical Theory Workshop's Experimental Village Rehearsal Space,
> after several hours of wrestling with the data, our experts have now
> come up with a possible answer. Lousy acting.
> T. Hawkes

The problem, I guess, was rather due to too good acting.  The lousier
the actors, the better: Lousy acting is what you need to get your

What regards plot and situation, I think that there is no comic element
left in Shakespearean comedies that is not known to everyone in the
audience - some people may even have read the particular play or they
might have seen it before (why should they laugh if they know what is
going to happen); and everybody is used to the same comic situations
from other plays (films, TV comedies, sitcoms etc.) which have borrowed
these elements from somebody else who had borrowed them from Shakespeare
(who had borrowed them as well, of course). YAWN. For plot and situation

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