The Piscator Notebook

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Routledge, Jun 14, 2012 - Performing Arts - 256 pages
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'Theater legend Malina has written one of the most interesting studies of the avant-garde theatrical movement published in the last several years.' – CHOICE

Judith Malina and The Living Theatre have been icons of political theatre for over six decades. What few realise is that she originally studied under one of the giants of twentieth century culture, Erwin Piscator, in his Dramatic Workshop at The New School in New York. Piscator founded the Workshop after emigrating to New York, having collaborated with Brecht to create "epic theatre" in Germany.

The Piscator Notebook documents Malina’s intensive and idiosyncratic training at Piscator’s school. Part diary, part theatrical treatise, this unique and inspiring volume combines:

  • complete transcriptions of Malina’s diaries from her time as a student at the Dramatic Workshop, as well as reproductions of various of Piscator’s syllabi and teaching materials;
  • notes on Malina’s teachers, fellow students – including Marlon Brando and Tennessee Williams – and New School productions;
  • studies of Piscator’s process and influence, along with a new essay on the relationship between his teaching, Malina’s work with the Living Theatre and "The Ongoing Epic";
  • an introduction by performance pioneer, Richard Schechner.

The Piscator Notebook is a compelling record of the genealogy of political theatre practice in the early 20th Century, from Europe to the US. But it is also a stunningly personal reflection on the pleasures and challenges of learning about theatre, charged with essential insights for the student and teacher, actor and director.

'Piscator is the greatest theatre man of our time.' – Bertolt Brecht


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part 1
Personal History
Germany to New York City
Sunday March 25 1945
Tuesday March 27 1945
Wednesday March 28 1945
Thursday March 29 and Friday March 30 1945
Tuesday April 3 1945
Wednesday April 4 and Thursday April 5 1945
Saturday April 7 1945
Sunday April 8 1945

The Founding of The Dramatic Workshop 1940
The Studio Theatre
The Teachers at Piscators School
The Students
My Personal Struggle to Enter The Dramatic Workshop
Valeska Gert
part 2
Monday February 5 1945
Tuesday February 6 1945
Wednesday February 7 1945
Thursday February 8 1945
Friday February 9 1945
Tuesday February 13 1945
Wednesday February 14 1945
Thursday February 15 1945
Friday February 16 1945
Monday February 19 1945
Tuesday February 20 1945
Wednesday February 21 1945
Thursday February 22 1945
Monday March 5 1945
Tuesday March 6 1945
Wednesday March 7 1945
Thursday March 8 1945
Friday March 9 1945
Sunday March 11 1945
Monday March 12 1945
Tuesday March 13 1945
Wednesday March 14 1945
Thursday March 15 1945
Friday March 16 1945
Sunday March 17 1945
Monday March 19 1945
Tuesday March 20 1945
Wednesday March 21 1945
Friday March 23 1945
Saturday March 24 1945
Tuesday April 10 1945
Wednesday April 11 1945
Thursday April 12 1945
Friday April 13 1945
Monday April 16 1945
Tuesday April 17 1945
Wednesday April 18 1945
Thursday April 19 1945
Friday April 20 1945
Saturday April 22 and Sunday April 23 1945
Tuesday April 24 1945
Wednesday April 25 1945
Thursday April 26 1945
Friday April 27 1945
part 3
End of the Notebook and First Workshop Plays
Julian Beck
By Any Other Name and Maurice Schwartzs Yiddish Art Theatre
The Role of the Audience
A Confession
The Inspiration of Joseph Urbans Architecture
Eleanor Fitzgerald
The Classes
The Plays
Kandinskys Great Insight
Piscator and the Audience
Objective Acting
Between Two Worlds
Success and Failure
Piscators Return to Germany and to Berlin
Eric Bentley
Piscators Influence
The Work of The Living Theatre

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