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Shakespeare Thread

Postby Guy_At_A_Keyboard » Wed Sep 23, 2009 4:47 pm UTC

So, as the title says, this thread is a place to discuss Shakespeare plays, as well as productions you have seen (movies count!). I, myself, am an unabashed fanboy, and have been since I was about 12. I won't blather about my opinions in the OP, because this thread isn't really about me.

Also, posts about how Shakespeare wasn't actually that great are OK, but don't be a dick.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby mikhail » Wed Sep 23, 2009 5:03 pm UTC

I had to study Julius Caesar in school, but came to really like the story. I'd highly recommend the movie version with Brando and Mason as Mark Anthony and Brutus respectively. Any other fans?

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Dream » Wed Sep 23, 2009 6:08 pm UTC

I hope that folk will post with careful thought
Iambic pentameter in this thread.
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby PAstrychef » Wed Sep 23, 2009 9:13 pm UTC

I like the way some of the new-ish film versions have put the story in perspective for modern Audiences and made the plays about the script, not about the silly accents and funny clothes.
My faves-
Julie Taymor's Titus
Attenburough's Richard III
And Kenneth Brannaugh's A Midwinter's Tale, while not showing much of Hamlet, really does a beautiful job of showing the actor's life. Alas, I do not believe it's available in a digital format. You would have to watch it on a VCR!! :o
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Masily box » Thu Sep 24, 2009 4:40 pm UTC

This summer I saw such a good produc-
tion of Macbeth in Stratford, Canada,
it blew my mind; I'm going back there in
a month to see it again. As for films,
I've got a strange love for the Branaghs, Much
Ado
especially. I also love
Imogen Stubbs and Trevor Nunn's Twelfth Night.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby VorpalSword » Sun Sep 27, 2009 4:34 am UTC

mikhail wrote:I had to study Julius Caesar in school, but came to really like the story. I'd highly recommend the movie version with Brando and Mason as Mark Anthony and Brutus respectively. Any other fans?



I also enjoyed Julius Caesar. Is it just me though, or does Brutus seem like a big hypocrite. He says he cares about Rome, then shows disdain for the people and kills his "best friend" because a random letter told him to. Mark Antony seems like the most sympathetic character.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Alder » Sun Sep 27, 2009 11:51 am UTC

I have a lovely hardback copy of Charles and Mary Lamb's 'Tales from Shakespeare', which someone gave me when I was ten, which gave me a taste long before studying Shakespeare in school. I've a particular fondness for Macbeth (it's so quotable!) and both The Taming of the Shrew and Much Ado About Nothing. (Both of which provided me with favourite films as well.)
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby cleverdan » Sun Oct 18, 2009 10:09 am UTC

I've read Romeo and Juliet, Othello, the Merchant of Venice, and Antony and Cleopatra. I particularly enjoyed the last three. Othello's descent into madness at the hands of Iago was truly fantastic in a reproduction I saw in in the Sydney Opera House by the Bell Shakespeare guys. I also loved the fact that Merchant of Venice is slightly feminist, and presents Shylock as a character to be pitied, not despised.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby PAstrychef » Sun Oct 18, 2009 3:30 pm UTC

Just saw an amazing version of Othello done by the Joffrey Ballet. Even the three year old sitting near us was mesmerized. I'm just glad I didn't have to explain the plot...
Soon it will be Richard III, then Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. I'm fascinated by interpretations of Shakespeare, from Lost In Space to Prospero's Books to Romeo+Juliet to Titus.
But the best story of interpreting the Bard is Shakespeare in the Bush, which you can find here. It shows just how cross cultural Hamlet is, or isn't.
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Sun Oct 18, 2009 11:24 pm UTC

I've read Romeo and Juliet, Julius Caesar, Macbeth, and Hamlet, and the last two are probably tied for my favorites. (I've read a handful of sonnets as well, but I couldn't name them by number.)
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby JayDee » Mon Oct 19, 2009 12:18 am UTC

PAstrychef wrote:I like the way some of the new-ish film versions have put the story in perspective for modern Audiences and made the plays about the script, not about the silly accents and funny clothes.
Hmm. Which film versions are you thinking of?

I know that I would tend to rant at length
about a certain part of modern plays.
(To change the setting I don't mind so much
just so long as that change is made with care.)
A film could focus on the script and plot
but still stick to the setting of the bard.

Myself, I loved the movie of Twelfth Night
by Trevor Nunn (that Masily box liked too.)

I've not been game to try Bell Shakespeare yet.
I fear they wouldn't match well with my tastes.
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Vieto » Mon Oct 19, 2009 1:17 am UTC

I've read Merchant of Venice, Romeo and Juliet (too many times, not actually that interesting), Macbeth, and Hamlet. Hamlet, followed by MoV, have been my favourites.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby animeHrmIne » Mon Oct 19, 2009 6:35 am UTC

VorpalSword wrote:
mikhail wrote:I had to study Julius Caesar in school, but came to really like the story. I'd highly recommend the movie version with Brando and Mason as Mark Anthony and Brutus respectively. Any other fans?



I also enjoyed Julius Caesar. Is it just me though, or does Brutus seem like a big hypocrite. He says he cares about Rome, then shows disdain for the people and kills his "best friend" because a random letter told him to. Mark Antony seems like the most sympathetic character.


Although it may be said your point is true
Concerning Brutus and Roman men
After reading this play (but one time through)
Our thoughts on the characters* differ then:
I see Brutus as a misguided man
Who does believe in the Republic's worth
And who would rather kill a good friend than
See that the country is ruled just by birth.
As for Mark Antony I will admit
My teacher may have influenced my mind,
But does a man who issues with a writ
The death of many really seem that kind?
I see Mark Antony as bad at heart
While Brutus the passion*, if not the art.

*Ouch, that's forced.
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Midnight » Mon Oct 19, 2009 11:59 pm UTC

he is, indeed, an excellent playwright
macbeth is most stupendously well-done
performed at ashland shakespeare festival
in march i witness the famous Hamlet
i do believe i've nailed these dread iambs.


as a side note, I'll accept "passion" more than "character" but "con-cern-ing-bru-tus-and-ro-man-men" is but nine syllables. perhaps "concerning brutus and THE roman men"
uhhhh fuck.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby animeHrmIne » Tue Oct 20, 2009 2:25 am UTC

Midnight wrote:he is, indeed, an excellent playwright
macbeth is most stupendously well-done
performed at ashland shakespeare festival
in march i witness the famous Hamlet
i do believe i've nailed these dread iambs.


as a side note, I'll accept "passion" more than "character" but "con-cern-ing-bru-tus-and-ro-man-men" is but nine syllables. perhaps "concerning brutus and THE roman men"

Oops, typo. :D That actually was there in my head. I think . . .

Also, famOUS? May be a regional thing, but I say FAMous.

"performed at Ashland Shakespeare Festival"
You watched MacBeth? or will watch Hamlet there?
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby PAstrychef » Fri Oct 23, 2009 9:37 pm UTC

Chicago Shakespeare Theatre has Richard III running now, in a lovely performance.
Quick-does it matter how much or how little this Richard resembles the historical figure? Was he a mis-formed scum or was he libeled big-time by More?
And for extra points, how many of the plays have ghosts in them?
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Midnight » Fri Oct 23, 2009 9:49 pm UTC

animeHrmIne wrote:
Midnight wrote:he is, indeed, an excellent playwright
macbeth is most stupendously well-done
performed at ashland shakespeare festival
in march i witness the famous Hamlet
i do believe i've nailed these dread iambs.


as a side note, I'll accept "passion" more than "character" but "con-cern-ing-bru-tus-and-ro-man-men" is but nine syllables. perhaps "concerning brutus and THE roman men"

Oops, typo. :D That actually was there in my head. I think . . .

Also, famOUS? May be a regional thing, but I say FAMous.

"performed at Ashland Shakespeare Festival"
You watched MacBeth? or will watch Hamlet there?



okay yeah the famous bit was quite a damn stretch.

to answer your questions, both. I've see macbeth, and I will watch hamlet.
uhhhh fuck.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby PAstrychef » Mon Oct 26, 2009 5:30 pm UTC

Once more, the accuracy of Shakespeare as historian is questioned:
Agincourt numbers off?
After all of these years of thinking of these plays as depictions of real things, it's funny to see them as being closer to fiction. I wonder why people assume so much of this stuff must be accurate. I would hate to see a future historian using Lifetime Channel movies as a reality check for this period-especially if the also found the Saw canon, and maybe Wall Street as well.
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Tue Oct 27, 2009 12:55 am UTC

Shakespeare stories seem so "real" to us just because the plotlines have been cultural giants for so long--they're almost modern myths. At the same time, I don't think most of them are presented as nonfiction, and my school always mentioned the inaccuracies. ("Count the clock" being my favorite.)
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Guy_At_A_Keyboard » Wed Oct 28, 2009 2:00 am UTC

I just saw my college's production of A Comedy of Errors. It was very good, but it played up the surreal nature of the twins' experiences by making the costumes unusual and a mix of accurate and anachronistic, and replacing various props with similar looking objects. For example, one of the main characters had a tennis racket at his belt the whole time. I'm ambivalent about this, but leaning toward, "Well, it's a comedy, so realism isn't a big deal if the funny is preserved."

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby JayDee » Wed Oct 28, 2009 4:07 am UTC

JayDee wrote:I've not been game to try Bell Shakespeare yet.
I fear they wouldn't match well with my tastes.
In my class (on Greek Tragedy) today
the teacher mentioned one show that she saw
put on by Bell. It was Macbeth... IN SPACE!

Which awful as it is sounds rather fun.
(but not as fun as this SMBC.)
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Chuff » Wed Oct 28, 2009 4:14 am UTC

I've read Macbeth, Romeo and Juliet, Midsummer Night's Dream, Comedy of Errors, Much Ado About Nothing, and 15 or so sonnets. I also saw an excellent production of The Tempest at the Ashland Theater Festival.. Strangely, I've acted as Hamlet in an abridged to the point of hilarity version of hamlet called simply 15 Minute Hamlet, but I haven't read Hamlet. I've also seen Shakespeare in Love, Rozencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, and Shakespeare's Dog. I also read a novel called Fool, which is King Lear from the point of his fool.

Anyways, I quite like Shakespeare. Sure, he ripped everything off of other people, but who didn't? And he didn't even have TVTropes. One of my favorite parts of his writing is the way he mixes high drama and comedy of errors and such with bathroom humor.
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Ixtellor » Wed Oct 28, 2009 12:54 pm UTC

If you want to ease into Shakespere, become MEGA entertained, or behold Shakespere in a new and funny light...

I would highly recommend the Reduced Shakespere Company.

Here is a list of their current US tour dates.
http://www.reducedshakespeare.com/tour.php?country=USA

My wife eventually bought one of their DVD's(maybe it was a BBC production).

But very entertaining.

I did see anyone mention the Merchant of Venice. This to me was the most interesting play - as a political science guy.


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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Midnight » Sat Oct 31, 2009 5:36 pm UTC

Ixtellor wrote:I did see anyone mention the Merchant of VeniceTaming of the Jew. This to me was the most interesting play - as a political science guy.


Ixtellor


Not only was that play, in my opinion, pretty anti-semetic... even if you go from the argument of "he's just trying to survive in a world that hates him", that 1) actually doesn't justify his actions. 2) more than his other works, it's a DEEEERECT ripoff. I mean sure, he took material from Roman playwrights... a thousand years ago. But Christopher Marlowe (and his "Jew of Malta") was shakespeare's contemporary.

Plus the bit at the end where it's like "BUT WAIT. LET ME EXPLOIT THIS ODDLY CONVIENENT LOOPHOLE which says that you can take his flesh but not his blood"... I dunno. Shakespeare can be heavy-handed, but that's up there with twelfth night's "exit, pursued by a bear". also, back to the anti-semitic thing--they converted Shylock to a Christian! And now all is right in the world!
uhhhh fuck.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby mmmcannibalism » Sun Nov 01, 2009 5:57 am UTC

Let's see, I have read; "Hamlet" "Othello" "Macbeth" "Midsummer Night's Dream" "Romeo and Juliet"(arranged from favorite to least favorite)

IMO Hamlet is theh greatest work of literature ever.

For some reason I dislike the comedies, I do however suspect they would be much better actually acted out.
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby BlueNight » Sun Nov 01, 2009 2:55 pm UTC

The only one I actually enjoyed reading in class was The Tempest. I could envision a sci-fi version that used abridged original dialogue (like the R&J starring Leo deCaprio).
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Vieto » Sun Nov 01, 2009 8:20 pm UTC

Midnight wrote:also, back to the anti-semitic thing--they converted Shylock to a Christian! And now all is right in the world!


Yeah, i thought that too. How are you supposed to enforce that anyways?

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby PAstrychef » Mon Nov 02, 2009 2:47 am UTC

Hey, when Merchant was written converting someone to the (right brand of) Christianity did make everything all right.
For an SF version of The Tempest see Forbidden Planet.
While it's fun to see versions of the plays using modern dress and periods, knowing the context they were written in is important. I bet people didn't start to assume they were historically accurate until decades after Shakespeare died.
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Midnight » Mon Nov 02, 2009 3:28 am UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:Let's see, I have read; "Hamlet" "Othello" "Macbeth" "Midsummer Night's Dream" "Romeo and Juliet"(arranged from favorite to least favorite)

IMO Hamlet is theh greatest work of literature ever.

For some reason I dislike the comedies, I do however suspect they would be much better actually acted out.


personally I prefer the language in macbeth. However, it is DEFINITELY true that the comedies are WAY better acted out. That's true with all comedies though. In drama, you can leave the physicality out and it's still like, intense writing with Deep Themes and whatnot. In comedy, if you lose the physicality and the timing, it's lame.

I saw A Midsummer Night's Dream at the Oregon Shakespeare festival and JE-HE-SUS KUH-RIST. It was so awesome. It was set in like, a disco-ey era and there were blacklights that made everything turn crazy colors and all the pieces of the set would swing around... it really captured the surreality of it. And at the end, when everyone's all happy and together, the play-within-a-play people drove onstage in their technicolor Volkswagen bus, and the guy playing Bottom pulled out an electric guitar, and stood on a platform which elevated him about eight feet in the air.
Let me reiterate:
Guy. Standing on an eight-foot platform. Soloing on the electric guitar. Next to a psychedelic volkswagen bus. Surrounded by people dancing in crazy outfits that are lit by blacklights next to awesome sets.

It. Was. Awesome.
uhhhh fuck.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Ixtellor » Tue Nov 03, 2009 5:15 pm UTC

Midnight wrote:Not only was that play, in my opinion, pretty anti-semetic... even if you go from the argument of "he's just trying to survive in a world that hates him", that 1) actually doesn't justify his actions. 2) more than his other works, it's a DEEEERECT ripoff. I mean sure, he took material from Roman playwrights... a thousand years ago. But Christopher Marlowe (and his "Jew of Malta") was shakespeare's contemporary.


1) Shakespere ripped off all his plays, this is not news.

2) The Merchant of Venice -- anti-semetic??
It its true that when he wrote the play, Shylock was played as comedic villan. This has not been the case for along time, and he is almost always portrayed as a sympathetic character -- who falls victim to injustice.

Also, did you read this:

Hath not a Jew eyes?
Hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions; fed with the same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject to the same diseases, heal'd by the same means, warm'd and cool'd by the same winter and summer as a Christian is?
If you prick us, do we not bleed?
If you tickle us, do we not laugh?
If you poison us, do we not die?
And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge? If we are like you in the rest, we will resemble you in that.
If a Jew wrong a Christian, what is his humility?
Revenge.
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The villainy you teach me, I will execute, and it shall go hard but I will better the instruction.


I challenge you to find a better argument against anti-semitism by a non Jewish person in that era. And more so, its the exact argument we have being using to erase prejudice and inequality ever since.

Ixtellor

P.S. Hamlets soliloquy is better than anything in Macbeth. People get up on "to be or" but its a deep speech with lots of insightful observations ahead of his time.
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Midnight » Wed Nov 04, 2009 12:47 am UTC

Ixtellor wrote:
Midnight wrote:2) more than his other works, it was a DEEEERECT ripoff
1) Shakespere ripped off all his plays, this is not news.
.

I feel like that answers that.


And yes, it can be played sympathetically, but it was written as an evil villain, and REGARDLESS of his famous monologue, I reiterate: all is well and good after he becomes converted to Christian. That speech was worth approximately nothing in the context of the play, nor did it mean anything in the context of history. I'm sure that the play did not make people tolerant towards Jews when it was written. It made people want to convert them.


And though To Be Or Not To Be is a nice speech, as far as one liners go "Cry havoc and let loose the dogs of war" and "light thickens and the crow makes wing to the rooky wood" are all awesome. So awesome.
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Sir_Elderberry » Wed Nov 04, 2009 12:50 am UTC

However, from what I've heard, Shylock got off at least a little better than contemporary Jewish villains would have. Shakespeare doesn't get a free pass here but maybe gets half a point for trying.
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Nicholas T » Wed Nov 04, 2009 2:48 am UTC

The thing to remember about Shylock is that there is plenty to go on from the text itself to read him sympathetically, even if it is through our modern eyes. "Hath not a Jew eyes?" is a speech of real substance, and Shylock is derided not because of his position as a usurer but because of his demand for a literal pound of flesh. I don't think very many of the Shakespearean plays can be reduced to one conclusive political position simply based on the way things end, and one of the reasons The Merchant of Venice endures is because of its moral and jurisprudential ambiguities.

Later in the history of literature in the British Isles you encounter other Shylock figures who fit into this money-grubbing stereotype of the Jewish usurer (c.f. Isaac in Walter Scott's Ivanhoe), but in works that you couldn't call antisemitic across the board (Isaac's daughter Rebecca somewhat takes over as the heroine of the book). Political positions that were moderate or conflicted in the past often relied on caricatures and stereotypes that today, we would read as extremely ideological. It doesn't follow that the political positions themselves are bound to ideology.

As far as "ripoffs" go, I think it's a bit anachronistic to look at literary originality back then strictly in terms of plot. That's a relatively recent way of assessing the value of stories. I don't think many people would claim that plotting (as events independent of their medium as a poem, drama, or whatever) is a particularly original contribution of Shakespeare's, or even an important one. This is arguably acknowledged in the plays: look at the Pyramus and Thisbe moment in A Midsummer Night's Dream.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Ixtellor » Fri Nov 06, 2009 2:12 pm UTC

Midnight wrote:And though To Be Or Not To Be is a nice speech, as far as one liners go "Cry havoc and let loose the dogs of war" and "light thickens and the crow makes wing to the rooky wood" are all awesome. So awesome.
.


Obviously I woudn't be a D&D fan/gamer if I didn't love "Cry havoc.."

But in just the most famous Hamlet speech you get gold:(in no particular order I give you)

For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil


The undiscover'd country from whose bourn
No traveller returns


Thus conscience does make cowards of us all;


The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune


Lastly, You could probably write a college paper arguing that Shakespere was the first Existentialist.

I wonder what Phil's take on this is.


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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Mother Superior » Mon Nov 09, 2009 1:50 am UTC

I have read King Lear, Hamlet and A Midsummer's night's dream, and I think that King Lear is the greatest of those three. But I wanna make a real strong recommendation here: Richard III with Ian McKellen. Superb adaptation set in the 1930s. Richard III uses a machine pistol. And a tank.
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Midnight
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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Midnight » Mon Nov 09, 2009 7:22 am UTC

I like Richard III. Great character. My teacher made me work some monologues as him and.. I have insane respect for any professional actor performing as him.

That stands even more true for Lear. Lear is like, the unactable god character. You've got to be so committed to the point of obscenity, that every actor in the world is terrified to be cast as him. If you pull it off, though, you're one of the greats.
uhhhh fuck.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Rhubarbed » Wed Dec 02, 2009 1:23 am UTC

I'm sure you must agree that we can not
allow The Taming of The Shrew to sit
amongst Bill Shakey's best and greatest plays.
Equals capital d

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby Kendo_Bunny » Mon Dec 07, 2009 9:34 pm UTC

I'm lucky enough to live near the Blackfriar's Playhouse and go to the school that supports it. So I can see Shakespeare for free pretty often, and for $10 all the rest of the time. It's pretty awesome 8)

Since I moved here, I've seen A Midsummer Night's Dream, Macbeth, Henry VI Part I, As You Like It, Much Ado About Nothing, and Pericles, in addition to various other Elizabethan, Jacobean, and Restoration plays.

I've read all of his plays and most of his sonnets, because I'm going to be an English teacher.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby GraphiteGirl » Wed Dec 09, 2009 11:32 am UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:I saw A Midsummer Night's Dream at the Oregon Shakespeare festival and JE-HE-SUS KUH-RIST. It was so awesome. It was set in like, a disco-ey era and there were blacklights that made everything turn crazy colors and all the pieces of the set would swing around... it really captured the surreality of it. And at the end, when everyone's all happy and together, the play-within-a-play people drove onstage in their technicolor Volkswagen bus, and the guy playing Bottom pulled out an electric guitar, and stood on a platform which elevated him about eight feet in the air.
Let me reiterate:
Guy. Standing on an eight-foot platform. Soloing on the electric guitar. Next to a psychedelic volkswagen bus. Surrounded by people dancing in crazy outfits that are lit by blacklights next to awesome sets.

It. Was. Awesome.

Would totally watch this. Our uni put on AMND this year, and the costuming really played up the subversive playfulness of the fairies. They were sort of decayed and grungy and glamourous. Our Puck was played by a girl, and this created a sort of romantic, flirtatious subtext with Oberon that really worked with the text.
Midnight wrote:Shakespeare can be heavy-handed, but that's up there with twelfth night's "exit, pursued by a bear".

At Shakespeare Company (full disclosure: I'm on the committee), this is pretty much a favourite comedic line to quote.

On the topic of this, I've just been put in charge of coming up with some ideas for next year's committee-supported events. Generally we put on plays, but next year we also want to offer some opportunities for discussions and learning and generally things other than plays, with a particular focus on education. Hopefully we can get the English dept involved. Any suggestions for possible discussion topics or activities?

Re Merchant of Venice: Studying this at a Jewish school was great fun.
Sir_Elderberry wrote:However, from what I've heard, Shylock got off at least a little better than contemporary Jewish villains would have. Shakespeare doesn't get a free pass here but maybe gets half a point for trying.
[/quote]This pretty well sums up the stance most of our class adopted, and the Shylock speech was one of our favourites for performance.
Was anyone else troubled by the fact that
Spoiler:
Bassanio equated love and marriage with the weight of lead, and turned out to be correct? Something about his speech didn't really seem to fully justify his choice. It seemed more like a convenient way to conform to the 'least obvious answer is the right one and the person who chooses it is the worthiest" trope than a choice that was actually indicative of his suitability as a spouse or his good character. Also, it's been a while since I've read it, but was there a little racism in the characterisation and vilification of one of the other princes vying for her hand? (This is, of course, entirely leaving aside the fact that Portia has no choice in the matter of her husband.)
Sandry wrote:Man, my commitment to sparkle motion is waaaaay lower than you are intimating.

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Re: Shakespeare Thread

Postby kcr » Sun Dec 13, 2009 12:50 am UTC

PAstrychef wrote:But the best story of interpreting the Bard is Shakespeare in the Bush, which you can find here. It shows just how cross cultural Hamlet is, or isn't.


I read this for a class and found it very interesting. The professor used it as "proof" to support her case that works don't always translate across cultures, and how traditional forms of theatre in many places aren't what Western culture thinks of as theatre... etc etc. Interesting lecture but I didn't agree with how she interpreted this story (ironically enough). The narrator is trying to describe the events of the play, and I agree, it's really funny and it's telling and reveals a lot about our different cultures blah blah blah. But what the narrator doesn't do is talk about the theme. Shakespeare was making a point: that basically, revenge sucks. Revenge is something everyone can understand. In this instance, the narrator wasn't trying to talk about revenge. I'd be curious to see how that would have turned out.... would they have understood the story more, thought it was less frivolous?


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