The Caucasian Chalk Circle

Author: Bertolt Brecht

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 140816101X

Category: Drama

Page: 176

View: 3363

This Student Edition of Brecht's classic dramatisation of the conflict over possession of a child features an extensive introduction and commentary that includes a plot summary, discussion of the context, themes, characters, style and language as well as questions for further study and notes on words and phrases in the text. It is the perfect edition for students of theatre and literature. Brecht projects an ancient Chinese story onto a realistic setting in Soviet Georgia. In a theme that echoes the Judgment of Solomon, two women argue over the possession of a child; thanks to the unruly judge, Azdak (one of Brecht's most vivid creations) natural justice is done and the peasant Grusha keeps the child she loves, even though she is not its mother. Written in exile in the United States during the Second World War, The Caucasian Chalk Circle is a politically-charged, much-revived and complex example of Brecht's epic theatre. This volume contains expert notes on the author's life and work, historical and political background to the play, photographs from stage productions and a glossary of difficult words and phrases. It features the acclaimed translation by James and Tania Stern with W. H. Auden.
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The Art of the Actor

The Essential History of Acting from Classical Times to the Present Day

Author: Jean Benedetti

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1136556192

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 256

View: 5749

How did acting begin? What is its history, and what have the great thinkers on acting said about the art and craft of performance? In this single-volume survey of the history of acting, Jean Benedetti traces the evolution of the theories of the actor's craft drawing extensively on extracts from key texts, many of which are unavailable for the student today. Beginning with the classical conceptions of acting as rhetoric and oratory, as exemplified in the writing of Aristotle, Cicero and others, The Art of the Actor progresses to examine ideas of acting in Shakespeare's time right through to the present day. Along the way, Benedetti considers the contribution and theories of key figures such as Diderot, Stanislavski, Meyerhold, Brecht, Artaud and Grotowski, providing a clear and concise explanation of their work illustrated by extracts and summaries of their writings. Some source materials appear in the volume for the first time in English. The Art of the Actor will be the essential history of acting for all students and actors interested in the great tradition of performance, both as craft and as art.
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Loot

Author: Joe Orton

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1472537998

Category: Drama

Page: 96

View: 5725

A black farce masterpiece, Loot follows the fortunes of two young thieves, Hal and Dennis. Dennis is a hearse driver for an undertaker. They have robbed the bank next door to the funeral parlour and have returned to Hal's home to hide-out with the loot. Hal's mother has just died and the pair put the money in her coffin, hiding the body elsewhere in the house. With the arrival of Inspector Truscott, the thickened plot turns topsy-turvy. Playing with all the conventions of popular farce, Orton creates a world gone mad and examines in detail English attitudes at mid-century. The play has been called a Freudian nightmare, which sports with superstitions about death - and life. It is regularly produced in professional and amateur productions. First produced in London in 1966, LOOT was hailed as "the most genuinely quick-witted, pungent and sprightly entertainment by a new, young British playwright for a decade" (Sunday Telegraph)
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Knives In Hens

Author: David Harrower

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1472537149

Category: Drama

Page: 70

View: 5079

Knives in Hens is a brutal fable set in a timeless spartan rural community "An outstanding new Scottish play, David Harrower's Knives in Hens is set in a God-fearing, pre-industrial world and deals, passionately and intelligently with a woman's discovery of a language that corresponds with her feelings...A remarkable debut" (Guardian) Knives in Hens received its premiere at the Traverse Theatre Edinburgh in June 1995 and transferred to the Bush Theatre in London in November 1995. "David Harrower's remarkable debut as a professional dramatist creates a haunting, poetic and entirely individual world of its own. I have never seen a play quite like it. . . You leave the theatre in no doubt that you have watched one of the year's most heartening and accomplished debuts. Harrower already seems like a writer built to last." (Daily Telegraph)
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The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui

Author: Bertolt Brecht

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1408179938

Category: Drama

Page: 88

View: 6519

This scathing satire and parable transposes the rise of Hitler to gangland Chicago and continues to have relevance wherever totalitarianism appears today.
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The Hostage

Author: Brendan Behan

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1474225845

Category: Drama

Page: 128

View: 4052

An essential text in the development of modern British drama First staged by Joan Littlewood's Theatre Workshop company at the Theatre Royal, Stratford East, London, in 1958, The Hostage is a play about a Cockney soldier held as a hostage in a Dublin lodging house in exchange for an IRA man who is to be hanged in Belfast. Civic Guards accidentally shoot him in a raid on the house. It is a witty and often profound comment on Anglo-Irish relationships and on the Irish themselves. This is Behan's best-known and most popular play and a classic of the modern stage.A magnificent entertainment which "crowds in tragedy and comedy, bitterness and love, caricature and portrayal, ribaldry and eloquence, patriotism and cynicism..." (Harold Hobson, The Times)
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'Ten Plagues' and 'The Coronation of Poppea'

Author: Mark Ravenhill

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1408160536

Category: Drama

Page: 96

View: 1553

In London Came the plague in sixteen sixty five One hundred thousand dead But I alive. London is infected. The dead fall in the streets. As the plague pits fill, the people of London struggle to maintain a society in the face of overwhelming mortality. Based on eye-witness accounts from 1665 and drawing poetic parallels with modern epidemics, Ten Plagues relates one man's journey through a city in crisis. Told entirely through a series of songs, Ten Plagues explores humanity's struggle with sickness and death and celebrates our capacity for survival. This volume also contains The Coronation of Poppea, a new version of Monteverdi's opera depicting the triumphant adultery between Poppea and Roman Emperor Nero. Tackling this tale of epic lives, Ravenhill updates Tacitus' scathing portrayal of decadence and imperial degeneracy with language which is contemporary, spare and brutally powerful. Taking opera librettos as a foundation, this volume presents two texts for modern music theatre by the seminally controversial playwright Mark Ravenhill. Mark Ravenhill's introduction to the volume explains the inspiration and writing process behind the two pieces.
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Piranha Heights

Author: Philip Ridley

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1472538285

Category: Drama

Page: 96

View: 8066

Philip Ridley's latest play for Soho Theatre brings his unique blend of story-telling mixed with an apocalyptic vision of a society at conflict with itself to the stage. 'Look - they're fading. Those liars. Dissolving . . . It's the end of their world . . . The birth of a new one . . . Our one . . . Our world.' It's Mother's Day and mother is dead. Now her two sons gather in her home to argue about the truth of their childhood. But a storm is approaching . . . with a violent new truth all of its own. This programme playtext is published to tie in with the premiere at Soho Theatre, London, on 15 May 2008. Praise for Leaves of Glass: 'Like a shard of glass plunged straight to the heart . . . superb.' Guardian
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Freefall

Author: Michael West

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1408135612

Category: Drama

Page: 96

View: 7303

There are things I haven't said. Things I want to say again. I need to think. I need more time. A sudden shock, and a man's life flashes before his eyes. He experiences an intense rush of extraordinary images and tangled memories, revelations and lost connections. People time and places swirl around him. As he valiantly attempts to stitch it all back together, will his luck hold out? The play's conceit follows a man who has suffered a stroke and then experiences a series of flashbacks. Trapped within his own head, the audience are taken with him through a whistlestop tour of his life and a series of vivid, often painful episodes from a childhood tragedy to a crumbling marriage.  In a beguiling portrait of mortality and humanity, Freefall explores memory, family and loss. From the author of Dublin by Lamplight and Foley, Freefall reunites award-winning Irish playwright Michael West with The Corn Exchange: Dublin's innovative theatre company who explore the boundaries and possibilities of theatre with their trademark style of Commedia dell'Arte. Freefall is a sharp, humorous and exhilarating look at the fragility of a human life, blending impressionistic beauty, poignancy and comedy.Â
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Polar Bears

Author: Mark Haddon

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 140813084X

Category: Drama

Page: 79

View: 7171

In Polar Bears, award-winning writer Mark Haddon balances humour and pathos to tell of one man's struggle to love, support and live with someone suffering from a psychological condition.
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Sucker Punch

Author: Roy Williams

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1408131366

Category: Drama

Page: 86

View: 3821

Roy Williams' Sucker Punch looks back on what it was like to be young and Black in the 80s and asks if the right battles have been fought, let alone won.
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Moonfleece

Author: Philip Ridley

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1408130556

Category: Drama

Page: 112

View: 9797

Moonfleece is an intense and thrilling exploration of memory and identity, and is the most directly political play to date by leading playwright Philip Ridley. Set in an abandoned council flat, Moonfleece centres on a young, right-wing activist forced to reassess his personal and political beliefs.
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Mongrel Island

Author: Ed Harris

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1408160757

Category: Drama

Page: 96

View: 4682

Marie is losing herself in her grey office existence, trapped by endless piles of paperwork and the same people saying the same things every single day. But as she is forced to work later and later into the night, she discovers a deeply strange twilight world where a new possibility for rescuing her sanity is illuminated by the fluorescent office lights. Commissioned by Soho Theatre and written by up-and-coming writer Ed Harris, Mongrel Island explores the mind and memory, offering a perspective of how the workplace can strip away our humanity. Combining madcap, surreal humour with an indictment of the corporate world's subjugation of individualism, Mongrel Island is a bittersweet, touching and darkly humourous play.
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'Town' and 'Honest'

Author: DC Moore

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1408135310

Category: Drama

Page: 144

View: 1088

"So here I am, homeless at home and half-gratified to feel that I can be happy anywhere" John Clare Inspired by the four-day journey made on foot by the legendary mad poet, John Clare, Town creates a new story set in contemporary Northampton. On John's return to Northampton from the bright lights of London, he finds his hometown is exactly the same as when he left it - from the rooms at his parent's house, to the Saturday nights on Abington Street. In fact, the only thing that seems to have changed... is John. Slipping back into his old habits, old jobs and old relationships, an out of work and disillusioned John considers why he swapped the anonymity of corporate city life for the comforts of home and embarked upon a sixty mile walk North. Northampton writer DC Moore's Town poignantly explores enduring themes of identity, isolation and belonging, rooting them in modern life. With heartbreaking honesty and humour, the play probes the feelings that we all have about our hometown, and follows one man on his road to get back to where he started. This edition also includes the darkly comic monologue Honest, where one man's addiction for telling the truth leads to a night that spirals out of control. Taking you on a journey across London towards a late-night epiphany, the piece explores the lies we tell ourselves and each other, and the fall-out when the truth is revealed.
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Festen

Author: David Eldridge

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1408153831

Category: Drama

Page: 80

View: 987

Helge, the patriarch of a chain of restaurants, is celebrating his sixtieth birthday and everyone is coming home from the party including Helge's sons, Christian, Michael and his daughter Helene. Missing from the roster of invitees is Christian's twin sister, Linda, who recently committed suicide. The reason for her action and the repercussions from it, form the basis of the shocking and painful events that transpire during a twenty-four hour period. In the midst of dinner, Christian makes a startling accusation and, even as the disbelieving guests are choosing sides, the play slowly unwraps the truth. David Eldridge powerful new play is adapted from Thomas Vinterborg's screenplay of the very successful film, Dogme. Published to tie in with Almeida Theatre production in March 2004 directed by Rufus Norris
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The House of Bernarda Alba: a modern adaptation

Author: Federico Garcia Lorca

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1408143941

Category: Drama

Page: 96

View: 3001

Following the gangland execution of her husband, the formidable matriarch Bernarda Alba will do anything to safeguard her family's dubious fortune and the future of her five daughters. A deal is struck - a marriage of convenience between her eldest girl and the son of a business rival. All Bernarda has to do is ensure that the wedding happens, and quickly. Five headstrong daughters cooped up in the family home in an emotionally charged atmosphere of bitter rivalry and repressed sexuality make that an epic challenge. One of the most celebrated European dramas of the 20th century, the play was finished by Lorca shortly before he was executed in Spain for his left-wing politics. He described it as a "drama of women in the villages of Spain" - a theme that is electrifyingly transposed in this version to the tough communities of Glasgow's East End. Faithfully preserving Lorca's sense of boiling tension and impending tragedy, this adaptation brings a classic text thrillingly up to date. This text was published to coincide with the world premiere of the adaptation, a production by the National Theatre of Scotland in 2009.
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A Thousand Stars Explode in the Sky

Author: David Eldridge,Robert Holman,Simon Stephens

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 1408198657

Category: Drama

Page: 128

View: 2745

On a farm in the North East of England a family gathers. Five brothers and four generations feature in an epic play about hope, love, fear and the very end of time. A Thousand Stars Explode in the Sky is a refreshingly subtle and compassionate vision of the world on the edge of apocalypse. Within a cosmological context, the focus is on a single family, their relations with each other and their unreconciled regrets, soon to become permanent. With an ensemble of strong, engaging characters, there are knotty, realistic family dynamics and a palimpsest of recent family history. The characters and dialogue are naturalistic but the serious themes are elucidated and alleviated with humour and quirky, surreal touches. The play represents a unique collboration between three of the UK's pre-eminent stage writers. The ambition of the partnership is matched by the ambition of the play's sweeping scope. Whilst the three voices collide, they also ring out individually without sacrificing the piece's coherent wholeness, and the play represents a rare, fascinating study in stage collaboration.
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Filumena

Author: Eduardo De Filippo

Publisher: A&C Black

ISBN: 140817264X

Category: Drama

Page: 96

View: 5929

Filumena is Eduardo de Filippo's best-known work and arguably his finest comedy, drenched in Neapolitan atmosphere and full of entanglements at once romantic and cynical. Set in the balmy heat of late 1940s Naples, Filumena Marturano lies on her deathbed waiting to marry Domenico Soriano, the man who has kept her as his mistress for twenty-five years. But no sooner has the priest completed the ceremony, than Filumena makes a miraculous recovery. As he reels in shock, Domenico discovers that this brilliant, iron-willed woman has a few more surprises for him. With masterful ambiguity, de Filippo depicts his characters with subtlety and balance: is Filumena a simple, illiterate woman who wants to create respectability for her children, or a ferine, opportunistic prostitute? And will Domenico, the selfish aged gigolo, learn to repent and accept his responsibility to his past and his family? Eduardo de Filippo was one of Italy's leading popular dramatists, a fearless social critic, a supreme man of the theatre, and a humane and compassionate writer. Exploring themes of motherhood, age and respectability, Filumena portrays de Filippo's trademark moral optimism and affection for his characters which underscores the drama's humour. This new translation by Tanya Ronder is contemporary, fluent and accessible, and tackles de Filippo's comedy with deftness and verve.
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A History of Falling Things

Author: James Graham

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1408146371

Category: Drama

Page: 64

View: 2533

'Oh, you do look...really good, though. You know. In the face. Oh and, uh, I love you.' Prisoners of their fear of falling things - keraunothetophobiacs - Jacqui and Robin are restricted to living indoors. When they meet online a relationship begins which forces them to confront their fear and discover what's real in their lives and what really matters. A History of Falling Things, a new play by the acclaimed young playwright James Graham, is a gentle love story that is fearful, funny and moving. The play premiered at Clwyd Theatr Cymru, Wales, in April 2009 before transferring to the Sherman Theatre, Cardiff.
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Nobody Will Ever Forgive Us

Author: Paul Higgins

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1408148188

Category: Drama

Page: 96

View: 7623

Patrick comes home unexpectedly from the seminary and older brother Johnny's not slow to tap him for money. Mum is suspicious, Dad seems indifferent, and pissed, and little sister Cath is distracted and medicated. Nobody Will Ever Forgive Us is the story of a family under siege. Living on their wits and stalked by violence, they defend themselves with the blackest of humour. The play was produced as part of the National Theatre of Scotland/Traverse Theatre's Debuts season and premiered at the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh in November 2008. 'A keen sense of theatrical dynamics, vigorous dialogue and ready wit.' Guardian
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