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King Lear at Bondi Pavilion Theatre

About Reflections on Literature, Life and the Imagination

Previous Entry King Lear at Bondi Pavilion Theatre May. 24th, 2005 @ 08:45 pm Next Entry
I took third year Shakespeare students to see King Lear at Bondi. Thank you Kelly for spotting the show AND for providing the parking: Go Kelly!! We had a relaxing 10 minutes in the Bondi Pub before the show... the beer was good... thank you Simone and Co.(too many important names to mention: Carl, Louwana, Prya, Suzie etc etc... who have I forgotten??) The play was a fascinating production in that it was presented in Kimono style with much Samurai type stage movements. I would have preferred the stage voices to be more strident... but then I am becoming hard of hearing (too much Rock and Roll in my youth!), but the choreography was very original and worked well in some sections. Overall it was a highly stylized production, visually very mobile, almost balletic. Dance and movement were key ingredients. The cast moved in patterns across the stage and there was much roll swapping. The conversation with the Director (who also played Lear) was the highlight of the evening. He gave a new insight into the way Shakespeare wrote both for the dramatic effect, or for the story line AND for the theatrical effect of calling attention to the whole business of Theatre. We do know this about Shakespeare, the fact that he loves to exploit the metaphor of the stage, but a new insight was given by this actor/director. One example he gave was the moment when Edmund stands soliloquizing on stage and then tells the audience how he plans to ACT the part in gulling his father and his brother, his aim being to gain his father's property. At the same time Edmund tells the audience: now watch how I am going to act this out. So Shakespeare uses this and many other opportunities to call attention to the "Acterly" or Theatrical side of the theatre- as opposed to the more formal dramatic qualities of language and story. So the suggestion was made that it was this "Theatrical" element that catered for a wider audience range than the more middle-class and intellectual appeal of the dramatic language... this was a fascinating insight into the theatrical side of Shakespeare on stage. Another idea that was pointed out was that so much of Shakespeare's meaning is expressed through the visual possibilities of what happens on stage- in addition to what happens through the language itself... all in all a very rewarding experience... so one can often gain a great deal from seeing a less than perfect performance... especially when given the opportunity to hear and actor/ director express his own sense of the dramatic possibilities of the piece... AND his frustration with certain elements that did not work as well as he had hoped....
Current Mood: accomplishedaccomplished
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Date:May 25th, 2005 12:36 am (UTC)

Re: Kimonos? different!

Thanks for your response Justine... it IS nice to know one is being heard... I have added another note on Lear... just in case you have missed it... cheers
Date:May 26th, 2005 06:44 am (UTC)

From one Bottom to another!!!

To Bottom!

I feel agitated and perturbed me at the mere thought that you are not fully aware of how I, your devoted Shakespearean student, hear and value every syllable of what you richly and relentlessly convey.

I personally account my neglicence to reply to your every post with excuses of greed and selfishness. i am usually too caught up sucking the the truth and wisdom from your teachings about WS that i forget whose reverence i owe. This spiritual enlightment that WS provides which you educate also means I am left speechless and thus un-commentary. However, my irreverent silence does not demean the value of your wisdomed teachings, nor does it mean that your voice is vainly echoing in the dark.

Here is one quatrian from my incompleted english sonnet that has already consumed 3 hours of my labour. Please take heed and contemplate it during idle, lonesome hours that nature so unqiutingly bestows on us.

the more the flower rejects its due reverence to the sun
The more the sun should remember its value for the flower
For if the sun misjudges its own sum
The flower will wilt by the hour!

P.S- in case you did not realize, (lol-as if) you're the sun, and i am the flower.

here is my English sonnet in progress; it still lacks iambic pentamter, a relevant Volta, and a cuplet, yet i never doubted Shakespeare was a genius.

The sun filled with glory estimates
The weight of the flower’s bounty
Too abundant with its endowments;
Too enriched to remember its master
Blame not the undeserving seed
Needy like a common tax collector
True you witness a painful need
To blossom like a fee’d lawyer
Instead, the more the flower rejects its due reverence to the sun
The more the sun should remember its value for the flower
For if the sun misjudges its own sum
The flower will wilt by the hour!
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