Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead

4.7 45
by Tom Stoppard
     
 

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Acclaimed as a modern dramatic masterpiece, Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead is the fabulously inventive tale of Hamlet as told from the worm’s-eve view of the bewildered Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, two minor characters in Shakespeare’s play. In Tom Stoppard’s best-known work, this Shakespearean Laurel and Hardy finally get a chance to take the

Overview

Acclaimed as a modern dramatic masterpiece, Rosencrantz & Guildenstern are Dead is the fabulously inventive tale of Hamlet as told from the worm’s-eve view of the bewildered Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, two minor characters in Shakespeare’s play. In Tom Stoppard’s best-known work, this Shakespearean Laurel and Hardy finally get a chance to take the lead role, but do so in a world where echoes of Waiting for Godot resound, where reality and illusion intermix, and where fate leads our two heroes to a tragic but inevitable end.

Tom Stoppard was catapulted into the front ranks of modem playwrights overnight when Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead opened in London in 1967. Its subsequent run in New York brought it the same enthusiastic acclaim, and the play has since been performed numerous times in the major theatrical centers of the world. It has won top honors for play and playwright in a poll of London Theater critics, and in its printed form it was chosen one of the “Notable Books of 1967” by the American Library Association.

Editorial Reviews

Edith Oliver
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead [is] verbally dazzling...the most exciting, witty intellectual treat imaginable. -- New Yorker
New York Times Book Review
This is a most remarkable play. Very funny. Very brilliant. Very chilling.
From the Publisher
Praise for Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead:

“Very funny. Very brilliant. Very chilling. It has the dust of thought about it and the particles glitter excitingly in the theatrical air . . . This is a most remarkable and thrilling play. In one bound Mr. Stoppard is asking to be considered as among the finest English-speaking writers of our stage, for this is a work of fascinating distinction.”—Clive Barnes, New York Times

“A masterpiece, not unlike Shakespeare’s plays; it’s artfully, imaginatively written, multidimensional, and hilarious.”New Yorker

“A coruscatingly brilliant, endlessly thought-provoking masterpiece.”Wall Street Journal

“In making Rosencrantz and Guildenstern . . . Stoppard mixed the poetic melodrama of Shakespeare with the doom-laden minimalism of Samuel Beckett and topped it with the slapstick of the Marx Brothers.”Rolling Stone

“A tour de force . . . Fascinating . . . A triumph.”—Roger Ebert

“Astonishing — a youthful prank bursting with theatrical mischief and literary flair.”Washington Post

Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead . . . has proved its sturdiness and power to endure . . . It is, after all, the most performed, most studied, most earnestly analyzed and strenuously anatomized of all Mr. Stoppard’s plays: the foundation of his international career and the inevitable starting point for anyone wanting to appreciate him.”—Benedict Nightingale, New York Times

“Full of philosophizing, nuances and complexities . . . [An] absurdist tragi-comedy . . . Stoppard’s . . . writing is pristine.”Charlotte Observer

“After the first night of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead at the National Theatre in 1967, Tom Stoppard awoke and found himself famous. It’s still a delightful shock, every few years, to be reminded how brilliant and engaging this play remains.”Independent (UK)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781555848941
Publisher:
Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
Publication date:
12/01/2007
Series:
Tom Stoppard
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
128
Sales rank:
116,313
File size:
2 MB

Related Subjects

Meet the Author

Tom Stoppard is the author of such seminal works as Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, Jumpers, The Real Thing, Arcadia, The Invention of Love, and the trilogy The Coast of Utopia. His screen credits include Parade’s End, Shakespeare in Love, Enigma, Empire of the Sun, and Anna Karenina.

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Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 45 reviews.
NJouy More than 1 year ago
If a play were cooked up like a stew, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead's recipe would be something like this: mix in a large pot Shakespeare's original play Hamlet, adding a liberal portion of Waiting for Godot and Abbot and Costello, with a pinch of Monty Python and the Holy Grail. Let sit while you flip coins; serve with a sprig of uncertainty. Stoppard's play is pure genius. While depending somewhat on Shakespeare's Halmet, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern follows what would have been offstage: the (mis)adventures of Rosencrantz and Guildenstern.or is it Guildenstern and Rosencrantz? Even they mix each other up. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead is a read for everyone, all ages, through the ages. With wit and humor the play disassembles and reassembles life's big questions, calling certain conventions meaningless with playing within those conventions: a play's got to begin and end somewhere. A fabulous read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
My friend and I were seniors in high school when we were introduced to this book. Alot of the other girls in our class were snots about reading anything that didn't relate to them. However my friend and I could not help but laugh hysterical at parts and read scenes over and over. She got me the book as a present and it is definitely a keeper! Whenever I am feeling sad I can just read a part of the book and be laughing in seconds. I loved it!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this play among many others in high school and was smitten with Tom Stoppard's work. His prose and ability to tell a story within another story was fantastic. I rank Tom Stoppard among the best playwrights of all time for this play alone, not to mention all the other pieces he's written. This will make you laugh until your sides hurt and think until you can't think anymore. I loved it.
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