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To look at the performance history of Titus Andronicus is to confront some provocative questions such as why has this play posed severe problems for generations of readers, critics, editors, actors, directors, and playgoers. The book examines twelve major theatrical productions and one film, on the play, that appeared in the years 1989-2009. It begins with Edward Ravenscroft's version that superseded Shakespeare's script. Peter Brook chose to stylise or formalise many moments, and Deborah Warner's production worked with no cutting of the script. Every staging of Titus elicits comments about the daunting nature of the script. The book presents Irving Wardle's reactions on Trevor Nunn's 1972 rendition, and Stanley Wells's review of the Swan production. The densest concentration of such problems and anomalies, as perceived by today's directors, critics, and editors, comes in the final scene. The productions that opened in 1989, directed by Jeannette Lambermont, Daniel Mesguich, and Michael Maggio, cut and rearranged the text liberally, often in an attempt to avoid the laughter. During the period 1989-99, three major European directors, Peter Stein, Silviu Purcarete, and Gregory Doran, focused their attention on the ways in which the play can be made to comment on specific contemporary affairs. Julie Taymor's venture in 1994 combined stylization with the 'visceral reality' as a means to keep spectators off balance and continuously sensitive to the shocking brutality of the play's events. The book ends by discussing the efforts of Yukio Ninagaw, Bill Alexander, Gale Edwards, Richard Rose, and Lucy Bailey.

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If honour and principle were the watchwords for Caesars of the nineteenth century, and totalitarianism the core of twentieth, the word which ghosts twenty-first-century productions most clearly is 'spin'. This book traces this evolutionary journey, and discusses productions because they somehow speak to ideas about the play which characterise their period of production, or they have significant features in their own right. It first gives an account of productions of the play prior to the Second World War, right from the stagings at the Globe Theatre's in 1599 to William Bridges-Adams's productions till 1934. The 1937 Orson Welles's production of Julius Caesar, staged at New York's Mercury Theatre was decked out with all the trappings and scenic theatricality of contemporary European Fascism. Shakespeare's play becomes a forum for a consideration of an ethics of American identity with John Houseman's 1953 film. The book discusses three modernist productions of Lindsay Anderson, John Barton and Trevor Nunn, and the new versions of the play for the British TV. The productions under Thatcher's Britain are also focused as well as the unknown accents, especially the Indian and African ones. The productions of Italy, Austria and Germany productions have eschewed direct political association with past or present regimes. The book also presents a detailed study of two productions by a single company, Georgia Shakespeare. In the new millennium, the play's back-and-forth exchange between its long past and the shrill and vibrant insistence of its present, have taken centre stage.

Anderson, Barton and Nunn
Andrew James Hartley

modernist wave which, in the course of the next decade, demanded greater attention and started to dictate new standards of success. This chapter will consider three productions which model different forms of that modernist impulse: Lindsay Anderson’s 1964 production at the Royal Court; John Barton’s 1968 production for the RSC; and Trevor Nunn’s production, also for the RSC, in 1972. Each staging targeted

in Julius Caesar
Taking the measure of Antony and Cleopatra, Royal Shakespeare Company, 1972, 1978, 1982
Carol Chillington Rutter

Up-scale Egypt: 1972 In an essay titled ‘Past the Size of Dreaming’ first published in 1977 (too late to be of any use to the recently appointed artistic director of the RSC, Trevor Nunn, as he was planning Antony and Cleopatra for his 1972 season), Bernard Beckerman asked, ‘What are the dimensions of Antony and Cleopatra ? Is it truly “a vast canvas” depicting the clash of empires?’ Or is it as ‘delicate as porcelain, fragile as a lyric of elusive affection’? (Beckerman 1979 , 209). Twenty years earlier, when the play

in Antony and Cleopatra
Michael D. Friedman and Alan Dessen

excitement in Shakespeare’s words, personae, or events but rather to transpose the action from ancient Rome to a more recent period so as to create striking, compelling images meaningful to the spectator (a solution familiar to generations of playgoers). A different set of choices and a different approach to ‘realism’ are provided by the 1972 Royal Shakespeare Company production of Titus , the fourth item to be presented in the Stratford ‘Romans’ season, with all four shows directed by Trevor Nunn. In his programme note for

in Titus Andronicus
Peter Hall, Olivier Theatre, National Theatre, 1987
Carol Chillington Rutter

. Clearly, if the return to Veronese epitomised how Hall imagined Shakespeare's characters, casting Judi Dench and Anthony Hopkins as his principals signalled another attempt to get back to basics. Hall hadn't directed Dench in a Shakespeare role since Titania in A Midsummer Night's Dream in 1962 when she was still in her twenties. When he left the RSC, she stayed behind, maturing her craft under Hall's ‘heirs’, principally Trevor Nunn, and giving celebrated performances in The Winter's Tale (1969), The Merchant of Venice and The Duchess of Malfi (1971), Much Ado

in Antony and Cleopatra
Michael D. Friedman and Alan Dessen

a very positive one, as in Trevor Nunn’s 1972 or Paul Barry’s New Jersey 1977 productions). To omit the justification, the plea, and the response is to change drastically the logic and rhythm of the final movement and, as noted in Chapter IV , to lose a rich pay-off set up by the previous disjunction of hands and parts of the body, a disjunction enunciated by Marcus: ‘O, let me teach you how to knit again / This scattered corn into one mutual sheaf, / These broken limbs again into one body.’ At this

in Titus Andronicus
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What price Titus?
Michael D. Friedman and Alan Dessen

to play the nightmare for all it is worth, or spare the audience’s feelings by avoiding too much realism (or seeming realism)’. Seale, Trevor Nunn, Jane Howell, Mark Rucker, and Deborah Warner chose to present that nightmare (‘when will this fearful slumber have an end?’) without recourse to red ribbons, red China silk, masks, or ritualised action. Thus, Colin Blakely, who had reservations about the ‘formal, almost ritualized style’ and the ‘symbolic and very cold’ violence of the Brook production, argued that in an

in Titus Andronicus
Neil Taylor

their key speeches, without having to raise their voices above a whisper’ (Shakespeare 2002d : 89). And when John Wilders, the Arden editor, considers two productions of Antony and Cleopatra (Trevor Nunn’s for ATV in 1974, and Jonathan Miller’s for the BBC Television Shakespeare in 1981), he recalls Emrys Jones’ theory that it might have been written for the small Blackfriars indoor theatre

in Screen plays
Steve Sohmer

was in his service during 2, 3, and 4 November. Small wonder that directors Peter Brook and Trevor Nunn report having felt an ‘autumnal’ atmosphere in Twelfth Night. Shakespeare’s internal calendar is quite simple and, doubtless, was transparent to some first auditors. From Antonio’s ‘three months and one day’ we know that the shipwreck, Sebastian’s rescue, and Viola

in Reading Shakespeare’s mind