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One of the greatest classics of modern theater-the fateful drama of a willful young aristocrat's seduction of her father's valet during a Midsummer's Eve celebration. Inspired by the new ideas of naturalism and psychology that swept Europe in the late 19th century, the play is reprinted here from an authoritative edition complete with Strindberg's critical preface, considered by many one of the most important manifestos in theater history.
The Father; A Dream Play; Miss Julie; The Ghost Sonata; The Dance of Death `Ibsen can sit serenely in his Doll's House,' Sean O'Casey remarked, `while Strindberg is battling with his heaven and his hell.' Strindberg was one of the most extreme, and ultimately the most influential theatrical innovators of the late nineteenth century. The five plays translated here are those on which Strindberg's international reputation as a dramatist principally rests and this edition embraces his crucial transition from Naturalism to Modernism, from his two finest achievements as a psychological realist, The Father and Miss Julie, to the three plays in which he redefined the possibilities of European drama following his return to the theatre in 1898. Michael Robinson's highly performable translations are based on the authoritative texts of the new edition of Strindberg's collected works in Sweden and include the Preface to Miss Julie, Strindberg's manifesto of theatrical naturalism. Introduction Textual Note Bibliography Chronology Explanatory Notes ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
A gripping new version of Strindberg's masterly, darkly hilarious depiction of the struggles and strains of marriage. Meet Edgar and Alice. Married for over thirty years, theirs is a relationship of explosive mutual loathing. Strindberg's tale paints a compulsive and bitterly funny portrait of a magnificently doomed couple, whose ongoing battle threatens not only their future, but that of their friends and children as well. This new version offers audiences a unique chance to see not only Part One but also the rarely performed Part Two of this masterpiece of European theatre condensed into a single two-act drama.
This second volume of the great Swedish writer August Strindberg's plays begins with To Damascus I (1898), the first of a trilogy. It mirrors his own departure from the naturalism he had explored in several of his earlier works, as he set forth on a spiritual odyssey. Crimes and Crimes (1899), from the beginning of his symbolist mode, is a lighter take on the themes in To Damascus I. The first of a two-part play, Dance of Death I (1900) depicts a dysfunctional marriage. A Dream Play (1901), which is one of Strindberg's most influential, shows reality converted into a dream; many critics consider it his greatest play. In 1907, Strindberg founded the Intimate Theater in Stockholm; The Ghost Sonata (1907) and The Pelican (1907), which were written for its opening, are two examples of a chamber play, a genre that Strindberg helped to originate.
Wild and newly single, Julie throws a late night party. In the kitchen, Jean and Kristina clean up as the celebration heaves above them. Crossing the threshold, Julie initiates a power game with Jean. It descends into a savage fight for survival. Polly Stenham reimagines August Strindberg's Miss Julie in contemporary London. Julie premiered at the National Theatre, London, in May 2018.
August Strindberg (1849-1912, Sweden's internationally recognised dramatist, was an astonishingly prolific all-rounder. The new National Edition of his works will run to seventy-two volumes: he was a writer of novels, short stories, essays, journalism and satire, he experimented with early photography, and in recent years his paintings have achieved the recognition they deserve. His novel 'The People of Hemso' (1887) will come as a surprise to most English-language readers, used as they are to seeing the bitter controversialist of plays like 'The Father' and 'Miss Julie' or the seeker for cosmic meaning and reconciliation of those mysterious later dream plays 'To Damascus' and 'A Dream Play'. This novel, a tragicomic story of lust, love and death among the fishermen and farmers of the islands of the Stockholm Archipelago, reveals a very different Strindberg. The vigour and humour of the narration, as well as its cinematic qualities, are such that we witness a great series of peopled panoramas in which place and time and character are somehow simultaneously specific and archetypical, and we leave the novel with memories of grand landscapes and spirited scenes. In a recent essay Ludvig Rasmusson wrote: 'For me, 'The People of Hemso' is the Great Swedish Novel, just as ...The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn [is] the Great American Novel'. His comparison is an apt one: if the Mississippi becomes the quintessence of America, the island of Hemso and the archipelago become the quintessence of Sweden.
Miss Julie begins as a flirtatious game between the daughter of a wealthy landowner and her father's manservant, and gradually descends, over the course of a long and sultry Midsummer's Eve, into a savage fight for survival. In Creditors, young artist Adolf is deeply in love with his new wife Tekla - but a chance meeting with a suave stranger shakes his devotion to the core. Passionate, dangerously funny, and enduringly perceptive, Strindberg considered this wickedly enjoyable black comedy his masterpiece. Both plays premiered in co-productions between Jermyn Street Theatre, London, and Theatre by the Lake, Keswick, directed by Jermyn Street's Artistic Director Tom Littler.
Miss Julie (1888), written in a fortnight, was regarded by Strindberg as his masterpiece, 'the first naturalistic tragedy of the Swedish drama'. Shocking in subject-matter, revolutionary in technique, it was fiercely attacked on publication for immorality. On Midsummer Eve, Miss Julie, the daughter of a count, sleeps with her father's valet, Jean. The subsequent conflict between sexual passion and social position, which leads to her suicide, is presented with startling modernity. The play's premiere at Strindberg's experimental theatre in Denmark in 1889 was banned by the censor and its first public production three years later in Berlin aroused such protests that it was withdrawn after one performance. Miss Julie has since become one of Strindberg's most popular and frequently performed plays. Commentary and notes by David Thomas and Jo Taylor.
Midsummer's Eve, Sweden. A night when the sun doesn't set. A night of drinking and dancing. A night to break the rules. When Julie finds herself alone on her father's estate, she throws caution to the wind and gate-crashes the servants' party. In the sultry heat of that long, light night, she finds herself in a dangerous tryst with her father's manservant, Jean. What begins as a flirtatious game, as the two vie for power, slowly descends into a savage fight for survival. August Strindberg's Miss Julie was written at a time of industrial and social unrest, a ground-breaking masterpiece that still provokes and shocks audiences today. Award-winning playwright Howard Brenton brings Strindberg's genius to life in this brilliant new adaptation premiering in July 2017.
Anxiously awaiting the return of his new wife, Adolph finds solace in the words of a stranger. But comfort soon turns to destruction as old wounds are opened, insecurities are laid bare and former debts are settled. Regarded as Strindberg's most mature work, "Creditors" is a darkly comic tale of obsession, honour and revenge. David Greig's version premiered at the Donmar Warehouse, London, in September 2008.
August Strindberg (1849-1912) is best known outside Sweden as a dramatist, but he was also a prolific writer of novels, short stories, essays, journalism and poetry - as well as a notable artist and photographer. Although he spent many years abroad, Strindberg was born, grew up and died in Stockholm and The Red Room is perhaps the quintessential Stockholm novel. A satire of the rapidly changing society of the 1870s, it was Strindberg's first novel and marked his literary breakthrough: it offers, he said, 'a panorama of a society I don't love and which has never loved me'. It contains some of the great set-piece scenes in Swedish literature, a gallery of unforgettable caricatures in the spirit of Dickens, humour, pathos and satirical targets as apt now as they were then. The Red Room is often called Sweden's first modern novel, and it remains modern almost a century and a half later.
Written in 1887, the year before Strindberg's most famous play, "Miss Julie", and only a few years after Ibsen's "A Doll's House", "The Father" deals with the same theme of male versus female domination. Laura and Adolf have a daughter, Bertha, whom they both wish to claim as their own. Laura tells Adolf that (in those pre-DNA days) he cannot be sure he is her real father. Wrestling with this thought, driven mad by Laura's malice, and finally betrayed even by Bertha, Adolf is last seen being strapped into a straitjacket...This extraordinarily modern take on the eternal battle of the sexes combines naturalism and expressionism to startling effect, so that the audience never quite knows what is real, what is the projection of the characters' highly pitched emotions. Mike Poulton, the author of this spiky new version, comes to Strindberg via enormous successes with Turgenev, Chekhov, Ibsen and, very recently, with Schiller's "Don Carlos" and Chaucer's "Canterbury Tales". "The Father" premieres at Chichester in September 2006 with a no-doubt-starry cast yet to be announced.
Alongside Tate Modern's big Strindberg Exhibition this Spring - his two most famous plays are published in the popular pocket-format Drama Classics series Strindberg's best-known and most performed play (1889): the story of a torrid affair between a manservant and his mistress. This edition contains Strindberg's influential Preface, in which he analyses his own play and sets out his ideas about how it should be staged.
Many experiences in the personal life of dramatist August Strindberg involved duels between the sexes, with ruthless, aggressive women usurping the supposedly male prerogatives of decision-making and leadership. Strindberg explores this theme in depth in "The Father ― "a highly emotional study of marital upheaval and a no-holds-barred struggle between man and woman. One of Strindberg's best works, the stage play remains one of the most gripping psychological dramas of modern theater. Biographical Note.
The three plays in this volume focus on the tumultuous relationships between men and women, whether they are father and daughter, brother and sister or lovers. "Miss Julie" is a ruthlessly realistic depiction of an upper class woman's seduction of a servant, emphasizing the differences and the antagonism between them. In "The Father", a man is brought to madness and driven out of his home by the suspicion that his daughter is not his own child, while "Easter" centres on a family in need of redemption for its sins and suffering, finding forgiveness at a season of rebirth. Strindberg's acute psychological analysis and his dramatization of naked emotion within a naturalistic domestic setting make him one of the great innovators of the modern theatre.
Strindberg called these five highly original late works (from 1907) chamber plays to remind us of Beethoven's last quartets. Like the quartets, they are intensely disciplined yet elliptical creations, Written for the Intimate Theatre (founded with August Flack), they strive to reach elusive states of being. Strindberg breaks down for us the barriers between sensory perception and fantasy, between real people and their self-projections, between the living and the dead.
Together in this volume are two plays by the Scandinavian geniuses of modern drama, which focus on a single theme-the reality of death. Translated and edited by Thaddeus L. Torp, this edition contains both August Strindberg's Ghost Sonata and Henrik Ibsen's When We Dead Awaken for performance and study and includes an introduction, a chronology of principal works and important events in the authors' lives, and a bibliography.
Strindberg's most important and most frequently performed plays - "The Father", "Miss Julie", "A Dream Play", "The Dance of Death", and "The Ghost Sonata" - are gathered together here in translations praised for their fluency and their elegance.
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