|English 521: Shakespeare and Performance > Course Schedule|
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- Schedule of seminars
- Topics to be discussed and applied to the plays
- Office Hours and Grade Scale
Nicole is working with the notion of performance criticism as an aspect of post-modernist literary criticism. The play of interpretive possibility afforded by the textual artifact in production further expands on the reader-response criticism articulated by theorists like Barthes in terms of the reader's responsibility to fill in the gaps. Regarding The Merchant of Venice, the focus of the production company (directors, actors, etc) and the critiques of performance reveal something about the social, political, or cultural climate of the production. She is specifically considering the treatment of Shylock, Antonio's potential homosexuality, and Portia.
Nicole is going to present a bit of the historic background of Jews in England, and then look at some key instances in the text where racial issues are foregrounded, and give examples of how different productions have dealt with these problems.
Here's a brief outline for my presentation next Tuesday. I'll be discussing Grigori Kozintsevās film production of King Lear (Korol Lir, in Russian with English subtitles), with reference to the following scenes:
Among other things, Iād like to discuss the role of the Fool in the play, compared to his role in Kozintsevās film, and whether or not the play ends on a hopeful note.
- 1.1 Opening scene
- 1.4 lines 180-314 Lear and Goneril
- 2.2 lines 318-452 Lear and Regan
- 3.4 lines 28-36 Lear's "Poor naked wretches" speech
- 3.7 lines 90-97 Regan and Cornwall
- 4.1 Gloucester and Edgar
- 4.7 lines 21-84 Lear and Cordelia
- 5.3 lines 8-26 Lear and Cordelia
- 5.3 lines 124-148 Duel between Edmund and Edgar
- 5.3 lines 310-325 The End
My plan is to show several different video clips of Lear productions, referring specifically to shorts bits from two scenes:
- Act I, Sc 1 starting around line 168, where Lear banishes Kent, and
- Act 4, Sc 7 starting around line 26, the recognition scene where Lear meets both Cordelia and Kent again.
Regarding the Godard adaptation, I'll be looking at communication (the failures of, more accurately) as foregrounded in the film, and instances in the play as well --especially Cordelia's response to Lear in 1.1. I'd further like to discuss the function of the letters in the play.
I will be looking at acting traditions - specifically how actors may utilize existing character paradigms in an effort to attach credibility to their performances, and the resulting opportunities for autonomy in secondary character portrayals. We will examine possibilities for character and acting indexes in King Lear, most likely concentrating on portrayals of Kent and Lear (1.1, 2.4, 5.3.235+)
Discussion of three differences between the Quarto and Folio texts of Lear, in terms of their effect on performance.
- 3.6.17-55 (Quarto only)
- 3.6.82 (Folio only)
- 3.7.98-106 (Quarto only)
- And if we have time we might consider the significance of the last speech in the play being given to Albany (Quarto) or Edgar (Folio).
I'd like to discuss different acting styles in the portrayal of Rosalind, and also discuss (briefly) portrayals of Orlando, Jaques, and Duke Frederick, with reference to the following scenes:
I also hope to show a few clips from the 1936 film version (with Laurence Olivier as Orlando) and the 1978 BBC production.
- 1.2 Wrestling scene
- 1.3 Duke Frederick's banishment of Rosalind
- 2.7 Jaques's Seven Ages speech (lines 141-161)
- 3.3 Rosalind (as Ganymede) and Orlando (lines 252-355)
- 3.6 Rosalind (as Ganymede) and Phoebe (lines 36-79)
The film/stage excerpts that I'll be using from AYL are as follows:
Among the film clips I will try to include bits of something very different in terms of a love story, including one scene that cannot be put on stage. We do not have to go as far as "Star Wars" to get something that the stage precludes.
- Act 2, Sc 7 lines 139-166 spoken by Jaques and,
- Act 4, Sc 1 lines 117-126 spoken by Rosalind (Ganymede).
For my seminar presentation, I will be focusing on productions of the Winter's Tale in Britain during the eighteenth and nineteenth century. I will look at how the cultural climate affected the text in performance and how changing stage conditions (sets, etc.) contributed to innovative and diverse performances over time.
My office is Clearihue D335; I am available after class for as long as needed. I respond promptly to email: <firstname.lastname@example.org>.
I use the standard grade scale for the English Department.