Reading Shakespeare on Stage

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University of Delaware Press, 1995 - Drama - 298 pages
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"Reading Shakespeare on Stage offers a straightforward set of criteria whereby anyone, from the first-time playgoer to the most experienced Shakespearean scholar, may evaluate his or her response to a production of one of Shakespeare's scripts. This articulation of response is not a by-product of going to the theater, but a central part of the experience. The "invitation to response" is a function of Shakespeare's stage, which was open to the audience on three sides, and is incorporated into his scripts through soliloquies, asides, and references to Shakespeare's stage and his dramaturgy." "The concept of "script" (as opposed to "text") makes possible an approach to Shakespeare's plays as plays, a function to which their literary quality is subordinate. That fact, however, does not mean that recent critical tendencies are irrelevant to the scripts. Feminist and historicist readings of the plays are "contextualized" in and by the ongoing energy system of production. It remains true, however, that many members of the growing audience for live performances can not determine what may have been strong or weak about a given production. The size and shape of the stage and the size of the auditorium, for example, define what can occur within the given space, but few spectators take that crucial factor into account. Reading Shakespeare on Stage provides the criteria for evaluation, while at the same time admitting that the criteria themselves are subject to debate and that their application emerges from the subjective psychology of perception of individual spectators."--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved
 

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Contents

Television and Live Performance
29
The Concept of Script
37
1987 and the Question of Space
67
Directors Decisions 1989
88
The Summer of King Lear
134
Winter of the Scottish Play
155
Measure for Measure at Stratford Canada 1992
173
The Good the Horrid and the InBetween
184
The Directors and the Critics Stratford on Avon 1992
211
Richard III Large and Small
232
London February 1993
247
Postscript
261
Appendix
266
Works Cited
275
Index
289
Copyright

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Page 27 - A strong presence of actors and a strong presence of spectators can produce a circle of unique intensity in which barriers can be broken and the invisible become real.

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