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What makes a Shakespeare production political? Can Shakespeare's plays ever be truly radical? Revealing the unspoken politics of Shakespeare's plays on stage, Andrew Hartley examines their nature, agenda, limits and potential. In considering key theoretical issues, analysing a wide range of productions, and engaging in a collaborative debate with Professor Ayanna Thompson, Hartley highlights a more consciously political approach to making theatre out of Shakespeare's scripts - and to experiencing it as an audience. Dynamic and provocative, this book is a crucial text for students and theatre practitioners alike.
Bringing together studies in theater history, print culture, and literature, this book offers a new consideration of Romantic-period writing in Britain. Recovering a wide range of theatrical criticism from newspapers and periodicals, some of it overlooked since its original publication in Regency London, Jonathan Mulrooney explores new contexts for the work of the actor Edmund Kean, essayist William Hazlitt, and poet John Keats. Kean's ongoing presence as a figure in the theatrical news presented readers with a provocative re-imagining of personal subjectivity and a reworking of the British theatrical tradition. Hazlitt and Keats, in turn, imagined the essayist and the poet along similar theatrical lines, reframing Romantic prose and poetics. Taken together, these case studies illustrate not only theater's significance to early nineteenth-century Londoners, but also the importance of theater's textual legacies for our own re-assessment of 'Romanticism' as a historical and cultural phenomenon.
This succinct and engaging text explores the interdependence between theatre and dance. Making a compelling case for the significance of resisting genre distinctions in the arts, Kate Elswit demonstrates why and how the ampersand between theatre and dance needs to be understood as the rule, rather than the exception. This illuminating guide focuses on the interconnected ecosystems of practice that constitute performance history, the expansion of theatre and dance forms on contemporary North American and European stages, and the disciplinary methods that scholars use today to understand such practices, both past and present. Accessible and affordable, this is an ideal resource for theatre students and lovers everywhere.
Regarded by Augusto Boal as the international icon of his vision, Jana Sanskriti are the leading practitioners of Theatre of the Oppressed and Forum Theatre in India and the East. The group has worked continuously with rural communities in West Bengal since its beginnings in 1985 to reconfigure social and political relationships through theatre, achieving both a solid regional presence and an international reputation. This book combines: a biography of the group, charting their history, methodology and modes of operation an examination of Jana Sanskriti through the writings of their founder, Sanjoy Ganguly a detailed analysis of their performance events and practices, including the plays collected in Ganguly's Where We Stand (2009) practical exercises and games, taken from Jana Sanskriti's workshops and festivals. As a first step towards critical understanding, and as an initial exploration before going on to further, primary research, Routledge Performance Practitioners offer unbeatable value for today's student.
Kingship, Madness, and Masculinity examines representations of mad kings in early modern English theatrical texts and performance practices. Although there have been numerous volumes examining the medical and social dimensions of mental illness in the early modern period, and a few that have examined stage representations of such conditions, this volume is unique in its focus on the relationships between madness, kingship, and the anxiety of lost or fragile masculinity. The chapters uncover how, as the early modern understanding of mental illness refocused on human, rather than supernatural, causes, public stages became important arenas for playwrights, actors, and audiences to explore expressions of madness and to practice diagnoses. Throughout the volume, the authors engage with the field of disability studies to show how disability and mental health were portrayed on stage and what those representations reveal about the period and the people who lived in it. Altogether, the essays question what happens when theatrical expressions of madness are mapped onto the bodies of actors playing kings, and how the threat of diminished masculinity affects representations of power. This volume is the ideal resource for students and scholars interested in the history of kingship, gender, and politics in early modern drama.
Shakespeare: A Playgoer's & Reader's Guide is your essential companion to all Shakespeare's extant works (as well as those known to be lost). Two of our most eminent Shakespeare scholars guide us through his sonnets, his poems, and his plays, providing the reader with detailed scene-by-scene plot synopses, cast lists, notes on the texts and sources, discussions of artistic features, and accounts of significant productions on stage and screen. Derived from the acclaimed Oxford Companion to Shakespeare, and fully updated to reflect the latest scholarship and most recent notable productions, it is the ideal compact guide for students and theatre-goers needing a helpful plot summary, or readers wishing to browse on fascinating background information.
In The Reason to Sing, renowned composer-lyricist and teacher Craig Carnelia provides musical actors with a step-by-step guide to making their singing performances more truthful, vivid, and full of life. Using a technique developed over decades of teaching the professional community of Broadway actors and students alike, The Reason to Sing utilizes detailed descriptions of sessions the author has had with his notable students and lays out a new and proven approach to help you build your skills, your confidence, and your career. This book is intended for musical theater acting students as well as working professionals and teachers of the craft.
LONGLISTED FOR THE GORDON BURN PRIZE 'Gorgeous' - Brit Bennett 'Pure genius' - Jacqueline Woodson 'One of the most dynamic books I have ever read' - Clint Smith At the March on Washington, Josephine Baker reflected on her life and her legacy. She had spent decades as one of the most successful entertainers in the world, but, she told the crowd, "I was a devil in other countries, and I was a little devil in America, too". Inspired by these words, Hanif Abdurraqib has written a stirring meditation on Black performance in the modern age, in which culture, history and his own lived experience collide. With sharp insight, humour and heart, Abdurraqib explores a sequence of iconic and intimate performances that take him from mid-century Paris to the moon -- and back down again, to a cramped living room in Columbus, Ohio. Each one, he shows, has layers of resonance across Black and white cultures, the politics of American empire, and his own personal history of love and grief -- whether it's the twenty-seven seconds of 'Gimme Shelter' in which Merry Clayton sings, or the magnificent hours of Aretha Franklin's homegoing; Beyonce's Super Bowl show or a schoolyard fistfight; Dave Chapelle's skits or a game of spades among friends.
This book offers a concise history of popular theatre since the early twentieth century. Using key popular culture theories and critical perspectives, Jason Price analyses popular theatres across different cultural and political contexts, drawing on a diverse range of international artists and theatre-makers who have worked with popular forms, including Vsevolod Meyerhold, Blue Blouse, Bertolt Brecht, Erwin Piscator, the San Francisco Mime Troupe, the Bread and Puppet Theatre and more. As well as defining what 'popular' means in relation to performance and the audiences who watch it, the book considers some of the political frameworks and causes that popular theatre has been placed in service of, such as socialism, the New Left and the gay rights movement. It also addresses the uses of cabaret, puppetry and circus outside their native popular contexts, examining the role they play in avant-garde and experimental theatre practices. In doing so, Price encourages readers to look beyond popular theatre as a simple form of entertainment and to consider its potential as a form of political activism, as a community-builder, and as a valuable tool for artistic experimentation.
Beginning from the unlikely vantage point of Venice in the aftermath of fascism and World War II, this book explores operatic production in the city's nascent postwar culture as a lens onto the relationship between opera and politics in the twentieth century. Both opera and Venice in the middle of the century are often talked about in strikingly similar terms: as museums locked in the past and blind to the future. These cliches are here overturned: perceptions of crisis were in fact remarkably productive for opera, and despite being physically locked in the past, Venice was undergoing a flourishing of avant-garde activity. Focusing on a local musical culture, Harriet Boyd-Bennett recasts some of the major composers, works, stylistic categories and narratives of twentieth-century music. The study provides fresh understandings of works by composers as diverse as Stravinsky, Prokofiev, Verdi, Britten and Nono.
This two-volume edited collection illuminates the valuable counter-canon of Irish women's playwriting with forty-two essays written by leading and emerging Irish theatre scholars and practitioners. Covering three hundred years of Irish theatre history from 1716 to 2016, it is the most comprehensive study of plays written by Irish women to date. These short essays provide both a valuable introduction and innovative analysis of key playtexts, bringing renewed attention to scripts and writers that continue to be under-represented in theatre criticism and performance. Volume Two contains chapters focused on plays by sixteen Irish women playwrights produced between 1992 and 2016, highlighting the explosion of new work by contemporary writers. The plays in this volume explore women's experiences at the intersections of class, sexuality, disability, and ethnicity, pushing at the boundaries of how we define not only Irish theatre, but Irish identity more broadly. CONTRIBUTORS: Nelson Barre, Mary Burke, David Clare, Shonagh Hill, Maria Kurdi, Jose Lanters, Fiona McDonagh, Dorothy Morrissey, Justine Nakase, Brian O Conchubhair, Brenda O'Connell, Shane O'Neill, Graham Price, Siobhan Purcell, Carole Quigley, Sarah Jane Scaife, Melissa Sihra, Clare Wallace
This two-volume edited collection illuminates the valuable counter-canon of Irish women's playwriting with forty-two essays written by leading and emerging Irish theatre scholars and practitioners. Covering three hundred years of Irish theatre history from 1716 to 2016, it is the most comprehensive study of plays written by Irish women to date. These short essays provide both a valuable introduction and innovative analysis of key playtexts, bringing renewed attention to scripts and writers that continue to be under-represented in theatre criticism and performance. Volume One covers plays by Irish women playwrights written between 1716 to 1992, and seeks to address and redress the historic absence of Irish female playwrights in theatre histories. Highlighting the work of nine women playwrights from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, as well as thirteen of the twentieth century's key writers, the chapters in this volume explore such varied themes as the impact of space and place on identity, women's strategic use of genre, and theatrical responses to shifts in Irish politics and culture. CONTRIBUTORS: Conrad Brunstroem, David Clare, Thomas Conway, Marguerite Corporaal, Mark Fitzgerald, Shirley-Anne Godfrey, Una Kealy, Sonja Lawrenson, Cathy Leeney, Marc Mac Lochlainn, Kate McCarthy, Fiona McDonagh, Deirdre McFeely, Megan W. Minogue, Ciara Moloney, Justine Nakase, Patricia O'Beirne, Kevin O'Connor, Ciara O'Dowd, Cliona O Gallchoir, Anna Pilz, Emilie Pine, Ruud van den Beuken, Feargal Whelan
Cross-gender performance was an integral part of Shakespearean theatre: from boys portraying his female characters, to those characters disguising themselves as men within the story. This book examines contemporary trends in staging cross-gender performances of Shakespeare in the UK and USA. Terri Power surveys the field of gender in performance through an intersectional feminist and queer theoretical lens. In depth discussions of key productions reveal processes adapted by companies for their performances. The book also looks at how contemporary performance responds to new cultural politics of gender and creates a critical language for understanding that within Shakespeare. This book features: - First-hand interviews with professional artists - Case studies of individual performances - A practical workshop section with innovative exercises
Working in partnership with the National Theatre, these new playscripts bring the theatre alive in the classroom. Each play has been carefully selected to ensure maximum impact and relevance to students, while the activities and teaching support are underpinned by National Theatre strategies so that teachers can feel confident using these approaches. Vibrant production images and the 'Making the play' section show how the play is brought to life on stage while the activities combine a focus on English skills with the play as a perfomance. Adapted by Bryony Lavery, this is an exciting new adaptation of Stevenson's classic tale of money, murder and mutiny. Young Jim Hawkins leads a quiet life at the Admiral Benbow Inn run by her Grandma. One night, fate brings Billy Bones, a large sea chest and a treasure map to their door. As Jim sets off on a voyage to find the treasure, she encounters a crew of the bloodthirstiest pirates, including the infamous Long John Silver, and she begins to wonder whether any of them will make it back alive...
In the past century, scholars have observed a veritable full cast of characters from Roman comedy in the poetry of Catullus. Despite this growing recognition of comedy's allusive presence in Catullus' work, there has never been an extended analysis of how he engaged with this foundational Roman genre. This book sketches a more coherent picture of Catullus' use of Roman comedy and shows that individual points of contact with the theatre in his corpus are part of a larger, more sustained poetic program than has been recognized. Roman comedy, it argues, offered Catullus a common cultural vocabulary, drawn from the public stage and shared with his audience, with which to explore and convey private ideas about love, friendship, and social rivalry. It also demonstrates that Roman comedy continued to present writers after the second century BCE with a meaningful source of social, cultural, and artistic value.
"Opera is community, comfort, art, voice, breath, life. It's hope." All art exists to make life more bearable. For Alison Kinney, it was the wild, fantastical world of opera that transformed her listening and her life. Whether we're listening for the first time or revisiting the arias that first stole our hearts, Avidly Reads Opera welcomes readers and listeners to a community full of friendship, passion, critique-and, always, beautiful music. In times of delirious, madcap fun and political turmoil, opera fans have expressed their passion by dispatching records into the cosmos, building fairy-tale castles, and singing together through the arduous work of social activism. Avidly Reads Opera is a love letter to the music and those who love it, complete with playlists, a crowdsourced tip sheet from ultra-fans to newbies, and stories of the turbulent, genre-busting, and often hilarious history of opera and its audiences. Across five acts-and the requisite intermission-Alison Kinney takes us everywhere opera's rich melodies are heard, from the cozy bedrooms of listeners at home, to exclusive music festivals, to protests, and even prisons. Part of the Avidly Reads series, this slim book gives us a new way of looking at culture. With the singular blend of personal reflection and cultural criticism featured in the series, Avidly Reads Opera is an homage to the marvelous, sensational world of opera for the casual viewer.
Girls, Performance, and Activism offers artists, activists, educators, and scholars a comprehensive analysis, celebration, and critique of the ways in which teenage girls create and perform activist theater. Girls, particularly Black and Latinx teenagers, are using the tools of performance to share their stories, devise new ones, and use the stage to advocate for social change. Interweaving interviews, poetic text, drama, and theory, this book provides readers with a comprehensive understanding of how and why this field erupted and the ways in which girls are using performance to transform themselves and enact change in their communities. As a white woman who has collaboratively created theater with hundreds of girls of color over the past 20 years, Dana Edell offers strategies for engaging with girls across difference through an intersectional lens in order to acknowledge the ways in which race, gender, age, class, ability, and sexuality influence girls' experiences and relationships with adult collaborators as they work to create meaningful, impactful, and often personal activist performances. This is the go-to handbook for teachers, theater directors, and performance makers who want to create politically engaged work with teenage girls.
This succinct authoritative book offers readers an overview of the origins, characteristics, and changing status of tragicomedy from the 17th century to the present. It explores the work of some of the key English and Irish playwrights associated with the form, the influence of Italian and Spanish theorist-playwrights and the importance of translations of Pierre Corneille's Le Cid. At the turn of the 17th century, English dramatists such as John Marston, John Fletcher, and William Shakespeare began experimenting with plays that mixed elements of tragedy and comedy, producing a blended mode that they themselves called 'tragicomedy'. This book begins by examining the sources of their inspiration and the theatrical achievement that they hoped to gain by confronting an audience with plays that defied the plot and character expectations of 'pure' comedy and tragedy. It goes on to show how, reacting to French models, John Dryden, Shakespeare 'improvers' and other English playwrights developed the form while sowing the seeds of its own vulnerability to parody and obsolescence in the eighteenth century. Discussing nineteenth-century melodrama as in some respects a resurrection of tragicomedy, the final chapter concentrates on plays by Ibsen, Chekhov, and Beckett as examples of the form being revived to create theatrical modes that more adequately represent the perceived complexity of experience.
Read by the most sophisticated audiences in the world, Will Rogers also spoke to and for the great normal majority. He tackled the most complex ideas and cut them down to size. A flying reporter, he traveled the world and wrote about events as if they were happening in the next county.
Filling the pages of this book are choice bits of Will Rogers' wit and wisdom--on President Hoover, taxes, the ongoing depression, Hollywood, and many other subjects. Selected by staff members of the Will Rogers Memorial from Rogers' collected writings (in twenty-two volumes), the sayings will make you nod your head and say, "You know, he's right about that "
In the 1950s, Meredith Willson's The Music Man became the third longest running musical after My Fair Lady and The Sound of Music: a considerable achievement in a decade that saw the premieres of other popular works by Rodgers and Hammerstein and Lerner and Loewe, not to mention Frank Loesser's Guys and Dolls and Bernstein and Sondheim's West Side Story. The Music Man remains a popular choice for productions and has been parodied or quoted on television shows ranging from Family Guy to Grace and Frankie. Though Willson is best remembered for The Music Man, there is a great deal more to his career as a composer and lyricist. In The Big Parade, author Dominic McHugh uses newly uncovered letters, manuscripts, and production files to reveal Willson's unusual combination of experiences in his pre-Broadway career that led him to compose The Music Man at the age of 55. McHugh also gives an in depth look at the reception of The Music Man and examines the strengths and weaknesses of Willson's other three musicals, with his sustained commitment to innovation and novelty. The Big Parade is packed with new revelations about the processes involved in writing these works, as well as the trials and tribulations of working in the commercial theatre.
London's West End has a rich and unique collection of theatres, ranging in date from early the early 19th century to the end of the 20th;more than fifty are located within an area of two square miles. This book celebrates the working buildings at the heart of the British theatrical industry. Focusing on the theatres in the West End, it looks at their architecture and history as well as examining what it is that constitutes a West End Theatre. The exquisite photographs in the book lead the reader on a tour - taking in the front -of -house areas, the auditoria and the backstage spaces - of some of London's most famous theatres. From the Palladium to the Lyceum, it offers glimpses of those areas not normally seen by the public, Such as rehearsal spaces, dressing rooms, backstage areas and even a Royal reception room. In doing so, it enters the private realms of the theatre technicians and actors, and brings to light the theatre's hidden world.
"A vivid page-turner" (NPR) detailing the rise, fall, and redemption of Broadway-its stars, its biggest shows, its producers, and all the drama, intrigue, and power plays that happened behind the scenes. "A rich, lovely, debut history of New York theater in the 1970s and eighties" (Kirkus Reviews, starred review), Razzle Dazzle is a narrative account of the people and the money and the power that turned New York's gritty back alleys and sex-shops into the glitzy, dazzling Great White Way. In the mid-1970s Times Square was the seedy symbol of New York's economic decline. Its once shining star, the renowned Shubert Organization, was losing theaters to make way for parking lots and losing money. Bernard Jacobs and Jerry Schoenfeld, two ambitious board members, saw the crumbling company was ripe for takeover and staged a coup and staved off corporate intrigue, personal betrayals and criminal investigations. Once Jacobs and Schoenfeld solidified their power, they turned a collapsed theater-owning holding company into one of the most successful entertainment empires in the world, spearheading the revitalization of Broadway and the renewal of Times Square. "For those interested in the business behind the greasepaint, at a riveting time in Broadway's and New York's history, this is the ticket" (USA TODAY). Michael Riedel tells the stories of the Shubert Organization and the shows that re-built a city in grand style-including Cats, A Chorus Line, and Mamma Mia!-revealing the backstage drama that often rivaled what transpired onstage, exposing bitter rivalries, unlikely alliances, and inside gossip. "The trouble with Razzle Dazzle is...you can't put the damn thing down" (Huffington Post).
This book offers a comprehensive overview of Canadian cultural policy and research, at a time of transition and redefinition, to establish a dialogue between conventional and emerging foundations. Taking a historical view, the book informs insights on current trends in policy and explores global debates underpinning cultural policy studies within a local context. The book first acknowledges what Canadian cultural policy research conventionally recognizes and refers to in terms of institutions, values, and debates, before moving on to take stock of the transformations that are continuing to reshape Canadian cultural policy in terms of values, orientations, actors, and institutions. With a focus on all levels of government-- federal, provincial, and local -- the book also centers on Indigenous arts policies and practices. This systematic and inclusive volume will appeal to academic researchers, graduate students, managers of arts and culture programs and institutions, and in the areas of cultural policy, public administration, political science, cultural studies, film and media studies, theatre and performance, and museum studies.
Sports Plays is a volume about sports in the theatre and what it means to stage sports. The chapters in this volume examine sports plays through a range of critical and theoretical approaches that highlight central concerns and questions both for sports and for theatre. The plays cut across boundaries and genres, from Broadway-style musicals to dramas to experimental and developmental work. The chapters examine and trouble the conventions of staging sports as they open possibilities for considering larger social and cultural issues and debates. This broad range of perspectives make the volume a compelling resource for students and scholars of sport, theatre, and performance studies whose interests span feminism, sexuality, politics, and race.
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