Literature & literary studies:

Shakespeare in Action

30 Theatre Makers on their Practice



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Shakespeare in Action by Jaq Bessell

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- How do actors prepare a script of a Shakespeare play for performance? - Where do directors begin? - What do Shakespeare's plays offer a designer or choreographer? - How do the cast and creative team work together in rehearsals? With Shakespeare in Action, Jaq Bessell presents thirty interviews with theatre practitioners from some of the larger producing theatres in the UK and the US, exploring the various processes which bring Shakespeare's plays to the stage. Actors, designers, directors and choreographers, including Eve Best, Bunny Christie, Gregory Doran and Lindsay Kemp share their collective wisdom and experience, and reveal how training and practice informs productions of Shakespeare plays. These first-hand accounts provide students of Shakespeare in performance and practitioners with a critical toolkit with which to study the plays in performance.

Author Biography

Jaq Bessell is the Director of Postgraduate Studies and Programme Leader for MA/MFA Acting at the Guildford School of Acting, University of Surrey, UK. After gaining her PhD, she spent the six years working in the professional theatre, first at the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis and later as Head of Research at Shakespeare's Globe in London. Later, she taught acting at the Actor Training Program at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City before joining the faculty in the M.Litt/M.F.A. programme in Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature in Performance at Mary Baldwin College in partnership with the American Shakespeare Center. She then became a lecturer and fellow at the Shakespeare Institute in Stratford-upon-Avon. Her work with actors is the source, form, and outlet for her ongoing research in Early Modern drama, particularly the plays of Shakespeare.
Release date NZ
January 24th, 2019
10 bw illus
Country of Publication
United Kingdom
The Arden Shakespeare
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