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Long Day's Journey into Night was written in 1940 but not staged until 1956, after O'Neill's death. Unashamedly autobiographical, it is, as he puts it himself in the dedicatory note, 'a play of old sorrow, written in tears and blood', a harrowing attempt to understand himself and his family.
Widely praised by critics and hailed by audiences, the award-winning plays in John Biguenet's The Rising Water Trilogy examine the emotional toll of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Approaching the storm, the levee collapse, and subsequent socioeconomic catastrophe through the lives of three couples and their families, Biguenet conveys insights into the universal nature of trauma and feelings of loss with heart-wrenching intimacy and palliative humor. Each play -- Rising Water, Shotgun, and Mold -- incorporates the structure of a house as it examines the anatomy of love, moving from the hours just after the levees' collapse to four months into the flood's chaotic aftermath -- and then to a year later when a family returns to their now mold-encrusted home. In aggregate, these plays employ the seemingly simple act of living together to examine questions of what home truly means. Biguenet also delves into the consequences of living in a city wracked by catastrophe and long-simmering racial tensions, yet so beloved by its inhabitants that even decades of federal neglect and municipal mismanagement cannot erase their emotional attachment to the place and to each other.
"Chakrabarti has crafted a rich psychological study that's also a shrewd portrait of the theatre as an institution - its vanities and strange conventions, its politics and sense of community, the opportunities it presents for both progress and blinkered traditionalism." Evening Standard Theatre Royal, Covent Garden, 1833. Edmund Kean, the greatest actor of his generation, has collapsed on stage while playing Othello. A young black American actor has been asked to take over the role. But as the public riot in the streets over the abolition of slavery, how will the cast, critics and audience react to the revolution taking place in the theatre? Based on the true story of Ira Aldridge, an African-American actor who, in the nineteenth century, built an incredible reputation around the world. Red Velvet premiered at the Tricycle Theatre, London, in October 2012. This new Modern Classics edition features an introduction by Kenneth Branagh.
Completed only two months before the author's execution in Granada at the age of thirty-eight, La casa de Bernarda Alba marks the completion of Lorca's 'trilogia de la tierra espanola' and is commonly held to be his greatest play. The theme of vitality and repression that runs as a leitmotif through his writings takes on a clearer social dimension in the 'drama de mujeres en los pueblos de Espana', with the presentation of a household of five unmarried daughters tyrannised by their mother's excessive concern with social class and obscurantist village morality. -- .
This is the first book to dedicate scholarly attention to the work of Tarell Alvin McCraney, one of the most significant writers and theater-makers of the twenty-first century. Featuring essays, interviews, and commentaries by scholars and artists who span generations, geographies, and areas of interest, the volume examines McCraney's theatrical imagination, his singular writerly voice, his incisive cultural critiques, his stylistic and formal creativity, and his distinct personal and professional trajectories. Contributors consider McCraney's innovations as a playwright, adapter, director, performer, teacher, and collaborator, bringing fresh and diverse perspectives to their observations and analyses. In so doing, they expand and enrich the conversations on his much-celebrated and deeply resonant body of work, which includes the plays Choir Boy, Head of Passes, Ms. Blakk for President, The Breach, Wig Out!, and the critically acclaimed trilogy The Brother/Sister Plays: In the Red and Brown Water, The Brothers Size, and Marcus; Or the Secret of Sweet, as well as the Oscar Award-winning film Moonlight, which was based on his play In Moonlight Black Boys Look Blue.
In this collection of essays written from different critical perspectives, African playwrights demonstrate through their art that they are not only witnesses, but also consciences, of their societies. Their works bear witness to the strivings of African people as they challenge the vices that continue to plague the continent, including neo-colonialism, dictatorship, corruption, nepotism, inter-ethnic conflicts, poverty, gender inequality and HIV/AIDS.;This anthology, which also emphasises the existence of a link or a sense of organic continuity within African literary tradition between the pre-colonial and post-colonial forms of drama and theatre, is designed to be a guide to students and scholars of African literature and society.
A selection of Oscar Wilde's best and most important plays - sharp, relevant and brilliant to this day. Who would have thought a comedy of manners written more than a hundred years ago would still be so apt and so funny? Oscar Wilde was a genius of play-writing, and his deftness, wit and sharp eye for social satire keep audiences in thrall to this day. Alongside Earnest, discover a biblical tragedy retold, Lady Windemere and her infamous fan and Wilde's take on an ideal husband, in this selection of Wilde's most important plays. '[The Importance of Being Earnest] has a strong claim to being the most perfect comedy in the English language' Daily Telegraph
'I've spent so much of my life wondering... passing people on the street... and now, yeah... you're here' When Tom and Samad meet for the first time, they are stunned by the similarities they share. In spite of Tom's adoption and all the years spent apart, the two brothers are joined by an undeniable biological bond. But as they become closer and their lives entangle, they realise that finding each other comes at a price. Bijan Sheibani's play The Arrival is a taut family drama about obsession, betrayal and the human need to belong. It premiered at the Bush Theatre, London, in November 2019, written and directed by award winning director Bijan Sheibani. 'A gripping, harrowing exploration of family, relationships and what happens when the past collides with the present... debut plays seldom get more assured than this' - WhatsOnStage 'Concentrated, unadorned and subtle, Bijan Sheibani's first play twists elegantly like a snake trying to catch its tail... It lands with assurance: here is a play with a long life' - Observer
Full Length, Drama
Characters: 8 male, 1 female
A searing drama about public and private indifference to the AIDS plague and one man's lonely fight to awaken the world to the crisis. Produced to acclaim in New York, London and Los Angeles, The Normal Heart follows Ned Weeks, a gay activist enraged at the indifference of public officials and the gay community. While trying to save the world from itself, he confronts the personal toll of AIDS when his lover dies of the disease.
"An angry, unremitting and gripping piece of political theatre."-New York Daily News
"Like the best social playwrights, Kramer produces a cross fire of life and death energies that illuminate the many issues and create a fierce and moving human drama."-Newsweek
This drama in blank verse, first published in 1787, the first important work of Goethe's Classical period, stands the Iphigenia-Orestes story as treated by Aeschylus, Euripides and Racine on its head. In Goethe's drama Iphigenia, daughter of Agamemnon, leader of the Greek forces in the Trojan War, in exile as a priestess in the barbaric land of the Tauri (Crimea), breaks the Tantalid family curse. By her own unaided human efforts she saves the life of her brother Orestes who has murdered their mother because she murdered their father; at the same time she enables him to expiate his crime. The female identity of the central character is all-important. It is uniquely her voice, against all the other voices which are male, that brings resolution - not by preaching values but by the visceral force of belief in the rightness of the language of the heart. This translation by Roy Pascal, made in 1954 and broadcast in two separate BBC radio productions, is published for the first time. Martin Swales writes in his Introduction: 'Goethe's Iphigenia is one of the most perfect poetic dramas that the moral culture of Western Europe has produced - Few works can have such purchase on our contemporary concerns. The endless bloodletting of the play's prehistory, the desperate cycle of outrage followed by acts of retribution that fuel the flames; the play's understanding of the notion of sacrifice that conjoins the sacred and the violent into a poisonous brew - all these preoccupations speak with incomparable urgency to us today ...Roy Pascal's translation is a matchless example of German poetry rendered into English by a master.'
While award-winning author Rudolfo Anaya is known primarily as a novelist, his genius is also evident in dramatic works performed regularly in his native New Mexico and throughout the world. "Billy the Kid and Other Plays" collects seven of these works and offers them together for the first time. Like his novels, many of Anaya's plays are built from the folklore of the Southwest. This volume opens with "The Season of La Llorona," in which Anaya fuses the Mexican legend of the dreaded "crying woman" with that of La Malinche, mistress and adviser to Hernan Cortes. Southwestern lore also shapes the title play, which provides a Mexican American perspective on the Kid--or Bilito, as he is known inNew Mexico--along with keen insight into the slipperiness of history. "The Farolitos of Christmas" and "Matachines" uncover both the sweet and the sinister in stories behind seasonal New Mexican rituals. Other plays here address loss of the old ways--farming, connection to the land, the primacy of family--while showing the power of change. The mystery "Who Killed Don Jose?" uses the murder of a wealthy sheep rancher to look at political corruption and modernization. "Ay, Compadre " and "Angie" address aging and death, though with refreshing humor and optimism. Elegant and poetic, intense and funny, these are the plays Anaya considers his best. The author tells how each originated, while Cecilia J. Aragon and Robert Con Davis- Undiano offer critical analysis and performance history. Both Anaya fans and readers new to his work will find this collection a rich trove, as will community theaters and scholars in Chicano literature and drama.
"Its brilliance lies in the way Shinn marries ideological debate to psychological complexity, shedding light, laser-bright and precise, on the way in which political discourse informs and shapes individual experience." The Times Election night in the U.S. and things are looking rosy for the Democratic Party as the likely President-elect, his wife, advisors, and twenty-year-old son John Jnr prepare for victory. When controversial photos of John Jnr begin gathering momentum on the internet, his father's advisors are forced into damage limitation leaving father and son to try and reach an agreement. Christopher Shinn's potent play examines religion, freedom of expression and personal responsibility. It premiered at London's Royal Court Theatre in September 2008. This new Modern Classics edition features an introduction by Dominic Cooke.
In the spring of 1948 Arthur Miller retreated to a log cabin in Connecticut with the first two lines of a new play already fixed in his mind. He emerged six weeks later with the final script of Death of a Salesman - a painful examination of American life and consumerism. Opening on Broadway the following year, Miller's extraordinary masterpiece changed the course of modern theatre. In creating Willy Loman, his destructively insecure anti-hero, Miller himself defined his aim as being 'to set forth what happens when a man does not have a grip on the forces of life.'
Subtitled 'A tragicomedy in two Acts', and famously described by the Irish critic Vivien Mercier as a play in which 'nothing happens, twice', En attendant Godot was first performed at the Theatre de Babylone in Paris in 1953. It was translated into English by Samuel Beckett, and Waiting for Godot opened at the Arts Theatre in London in 1955. 'Go and see Waiting for Godot. At the worst you will discover a curiosity, a four-leaved clover, a black tulip; at the best something that will securely lodge in a corner of your mind for as long as you live.' Harold Hobson, 7 August 1955 'I told him that if by Godot I had meant God I would have said God, and not Godot. This seemed to disappoint him greatly.' Samuel Beckett, 1955
'I am the slave ship. Wrecked. Empty. I am a shark, livid with the desire for blood. I am the sea, boiling with fury.' Amid the gloom of Victorian England, a black sailor, Thomas, prepares to take one last voyage, while an ageing painter, J.M.W. Turner, seeks artistic inspiration in a half remembered story. In twenty first century London, an actress finds herself handcuffed by history ' two centuries after abolitionists won her ancestors their freedom. Winsome Pinnock's astonishing play retells British history through the prism of the slave trade. Fusing fact with fiction, past with present, the powerfully personal with the fiercely political, Rockets and Blue Lights asks who owns our past ' and who has the right to tell its stories Winner of the 2018 Alfred Fagon Award, the play opened at the Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester, in March 2020, directed by Miranda Cromwell. 'The godmother of Black British playwrights' Guardian Alfred Fagon Award
MULE. Who created us? ROCINANTE. What kind of dumb question is that? The great master Cervantes, of course. Who else? MULE. God. ROCINANTE. Listen you obstinate fool. We're animals. We don't have to believe in God. That's meant for the superior species. MULE. Why did Cervantes create us? ROCINANTE. Because he was a genius. I think he made me a bit like himself. But those who ride us were not so lucky. Tariq Ali's latest play, The New Adventures of Don Quixote, can be read as homage to German poet and playwright Bertolt Brecht as much as a playful tribute to Cervantes's masterwork. The central characters from the original novel, Don Quixote and Sancho Panza, are mounted on their beasts of burden, Rocinante and the Mule, and Ali has them ride into the twenty-first century, where they are confronted by old vices familiar to them: war, greed, ethnic and religious prejudices, disappointed love, and economic crisis. Their story is satirical, and their songs are sad and angry. But there are odd moments of happiness for Quixote, when he imagines that a wounded US colonel is Dulcinea and allows himself to be seduced by her in a military hospital in Germany. Primarily interested in discovering the meaning of life and how it is molded by the world in which we live, Ali's theatrical device is the conversation between the two animals - Rocinante the philosopher and Mule the everyman who questions her relentlessly. Accompanied by numerous color performance stills of the play from its 2013 production in Germany, this volume is as intellectually stimulating as it is uproariously humorous.
Focused on the cultural relevance of theatre. Written in an engaging style. Designed to be accessible to undergraduates. Living Theatre is the most popular text for theatre history courses. The Seventh Edition builds on these strengths with "Past and Present"-a NEW feature that focuses on connections between theatre's long history and the practise of theatre today-and with a brilliant NEW design that highlights the beauty and excitement of the art of theatre.
Where are all those movements you made, those passions, those sighs, those sentences, those monologues? They're still here somewhere, in this air, in this space. Things like that don't just vanish. (from Shades of Babel) Goran Stefanovski (1952-2018) was an internationally recognised ex-Yugoslav playwright. Four of his five plays published here have never been available in English before. They all illustrate Stefanovski's characteristic use of source material, particularly folk tales and myth, to present a striking vision of the human condition, especially in the extreme circumstances of war, exile and political insecurity. Except for the elegiac Sarajevo, these plays are written in the playwright's favourite genre of tragi-comedy. The short scenes and robust dialogue mark them out as the work of a connoisseur of the language of theatre. The Black Hole, the first play in this collection, is considered by the Italian theatre director Paolo Magelli to be the best European play of the 1980s and is still regularly performed in theatres worldwide. The Conrad Press is proud to be publishing this remarkable, highly engaging, intensely dramatic collection of plays by a master playwright.
Witty and buoyant comedy of manners is brilliantly plotted from its effervescent first act to its hilarious denouement, and filled with some of literature's most famous epigrams. Widely considered Wilde's most perfect work, the play is reprinted here from an authoritative early British edition. Note to the Dover Edition.
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