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In the course of exploring the theatrical cultures of South and East Asia, eminent Shakespeareanist John Russell Brown developed some remarkable theories about the nature of performance, the state of Western 'Theatre' today, and the future potential of Shakespeare's plays.
In New Sites for Shakespeare he outlines his passionate belief in the power of theatre to reach mass audiences, based on his experiences of popular Asian performances. It is a personal polemic, but it is also a carefully argued and brilliantly persuasive study of the kind of theatrical experience Shakespeare's own contemporaries enjoyed.
This is a book which cannot be ignored by anyone who cares about the live performing arts today. Separate chapters consider staging, acting, improvisation, ceremonies and ritual, and an analysis of the experience of the audience is paramount throughout.
|List of Plates|
|1||Open Stages: presence and occasion||7|
|2||Audiences: on stage and off stage||29|
|3||Ritual: action and meaning||43|
|4||Ceremony: behaviour and reception||53|
|5||Performance: imagination and involvement||71|
|6||Improvisation: freedom and collusion||91|
|7||Response: actors and audiences||103|
|8||Settings: actors and stages||121|
|9||Criticism: texts and study||139|
|10||Control: directors and companies||144|
|11||Scenography: theatres and design||162|
|12||Actors: training and performance||173|