From Belasco To Brook

Overview

This multifaceted study, the companion volume to Leiter's From Stanislavsky to Barrault: Representative Directors of the European Stage (Greenwood Press, 1991), provides exhaustively detailed, yet compact accounts of the careers and accomplishments of eight outstanding directors of the English-speaking stage as well as separate, thorough bibliographies and chronologies of each. Samuel L. Leiter selected directors David Belasco, Harley Granville-Barker, George Abbott, Sir Tyrone Guthrie, Margaret Webster, Elia ...

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Overview

This multifaceted study, the companion volume to Leiter's From Stanislavsky to Barrault: Representative Directors of the European Stage (Greenwood Press, 1991), provides exhaustively detailed, yet compact accounts of the careers and accomplishments of eight outstanding directors of the English-speaking stage as well as separate, thorough bibliographies and chronologies of each. Samuel L. Leiter selected directors David Belasco, Harley Granville-Barker, George Abbott, Sir Tyrone Guthrie, Margaret Webster, Elia Kazan, Joan Littlewood, and Peter Brook as exemplars of the broad spectrum of directorial art as it has developed in the twentieth century; his cogent introduction identifies salient aspects of that art and reveals the wide divergence of directorial styles and techniques employed by the group. From commercial to classic to avant garde, their stylistic attitudes toward production include Belasco's minutely detailed naturalism, Guthrie's whimsical interpretations of the classics, and Littlewood's improvisational, anti-establishment, left-wing stance. Their varied rehearsal methods show how these directorial greats transformed the nature of the theatre experience through their unique vision of what stage production could encompass. Innovations by these directors in both the shape and function of the performance space are highlighted as are their theatre writings, many of which form the foundation for Western theatrical thought in our times.

Following the introduction, each of the eight chapters is organized into subsections that discuss the individual director's career, concept of theatre art and directing, and actual working methods. Each director is thoroughly assessed in terms of repertory, major productions, theoretical concerns, casting methods, rehearsal processes, and techniques of working with actors, playwrights, designers, and composers. Separate chronologies and a select bibliography complete the work, which will have significant appeal to a diverse group of readers, from stage directing students and their teachers to active professionals in the field and those general readers seeking a broader understanding of twentieth century theatre and stage direction. An excellent choice for text or supplementary reading for classes in stage directing.

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Product Details

Meet the Author

SAMUEL L. LEITER is Professor of Theatre at Brooklyn College, City University of New York.

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Table of Contents

Preface

Introduction

David Belasco, 1853-1931

Harley Granville-Barker, 1877-1946

George Abbott, 1887-

Sir Tyrone Guthrie, 1900-1971

Margaret Webster, 1905-1971

Elia Kazan, 1909-

Joan Littlewood, 1915-

Peter Brook, 1925-

Select Bibliography

Index

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