Shakespeare in Parts
A truly groundbreaking collaboration of original theatre history with exciting literary criticism, Shakespeare in Parts is the first book fully to explore the original form in which Shakespeare's drama overwhelmingly circulated. This was not the full play-text; it was not the public performance. It was the actor's part, consisting of the bare cues and speeches of each individual role. With group rehearsals rare or non-existent, the cued part alone had to furnish the actor with his character. But each such part-text was riddled with gaps and uncertainties. The actor knew what he was going to say, but not necessarily when, or why, or to whom; he may have known next to nothing of any other part. It demanded the most sensitive attention to the opportunities inscribed in the script, and to the ongoing dramatic moment. Here is where the young actor Shakespeare learnt his trade; here is where his imagination, verbal and technical, learnt to roam.
This is the story of Shakespeare in Parts. As Shakespeare developed his playwriting, the apparent limitations of the medium get transformed into expressive opportunities. Both cue and speech become promise-crammed repositories of meaning and movement, and of individually discoverable space and time. Writing always for the same core group of players, Shakespeare could take - and insist upon - unprecedented risks. The result is onstage drama of astonishing immediacy.
Starting with a comprehensive history of the part in early modern theatre, Simon Palfrey and Tiffany Stern's mould-altering work of historical and imaginative recovery provides a unique keyhole onto hitherto forgotten practices and techniques. It not only discovers a newly active, choice-ridden actor, but a new Shakespeare.
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The Actors Part
Rehearsing and Performing
18 other sections not shown
acting action actor Antonio Ariel audience basic Bassanio blank verse Caliban character character's comic context couplets course cue-line cue-phrase cue-space cue-word cued dialogue dramatic early cues early modern echoing Edgar effect emotional entrance exit fact Folger Shakespeare Library Folio foole full text give Gloucester half-line Hamlet heare heere Helena identify interruption Isabella Juliet kind King Lady Lear learned lineation look Lord Macbeth Macduff Malvolio Mercutio midline shift midline switch mind Olivia on-stage once orchestrate Orlando Othello Pandarus part-script part-text part's passion pause pentameter performance perhaps play players playwright Portia premature cue prompter prose prosody Prospero Quarto question rehearsal repeated cues repetition response rhetorical Richard role Romeo Romeo and Juliet scene script sense Shakespeare short lines Shylock silence Simon Palfrey single soliloquy speak speaker speech spoken stage stage-directions suggests technique tell theatre thee thing thou transition W. W. Greg words