Williams: A Streetcar Named Desire / Edition 1

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A Streetcar Named Desire revolutionized the modern stage and this book offers the first continuous history of the play in production from 1947 to 1998. Chapters survey major national premieres by the world's leading directors including Seki Sano, Luchino Visconti, Ingmar Bergman, Jean Cocteau and Laurence Olivier. Interpretations by Black and gay theater companies also receive analyses, and transformations into other media, such as ballet, film, television, and opera (premiered in 1998) form an important part of the overall study.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This book represents a major synthesis of resources and commentary on productions of 'A Streetcar Named Desire' around the world and across five decades." Felicia Londre, Kansas City Star

"[A] marvelous investigation of Williams' most famous play in production..." Plays International

"...it is [Kolin's] vast reservoir of knowledge about Williams coupled with the depth of his astute assessment of the play in its various manifestations that raises this essential book to a level will beyond mere chronology. Undergraduates seeking an introduction to one of the seminal dramas of the 20th century and Williams scholars will find this book equally valuable." Choice

"With this series ['Plays in Production'] Cambridge University Press leads the way in paying attention to the central playtexts that have shaped the modern and the contemporary stage and according them the kind of historical and scholarly research that they deserve..." American Drama

"In this study, an indispensable companion to all subsequent stagings of the play, Kolin provides a detailed examination and reconstruction of the Broadway premiere, an invaluable and difficult to assemble study of the premieres of the play in other countries, a brilliant assessment of the radicalizing of the play in recent alternative scripts and castings, and a review of the metamorphoses of Streetcar into such diverse media as film, ballet, teleplay and opera. Kolin's passionate attachment to the playwright frankly infuses his commentary, his years of study and research into Williams' oeuvre inform his scholarly insights..." American Drama

"Kolin's discussion of the original production...admirably lays the groundwork for fully appreciating the vastly varied history of the play...This fine volume confirms the premise of the series [Plays in Production]: systematically documenting and critically assessing the performance histories of individual works provides a lively, accessible and valuable register for contemporary theatre historiography." The Drama Review

"Anyone who picks up his book will learn something new from this well-written, entertaining and accessible mixture of theatre history, dramatic criticism, and cultural analysis." American Drama

"Kolin's efforts...succeed admirably in providing a rich view of this script's convoluted history. Kolin does an admirable job of keeping the reader engaged with his clean and concise style...[A] welcome addition to the Plays in Production series." Midwest Quarterly

"[A] marvelous investigation of Williams' most famous play in production..." Plays International

"...a welcome addition to the Plays in Production series." The Midwet Quarterly

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521626101
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 4/28/2000
  • Series: Plays in Production Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 252
  • Product dimensions: 5.43 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.59 (d)

Table of Contents

List of illustrations; General preface; Preface; Acknowledgements; 1. A Streetcar Named Desire - The Broadway premiere and beyond; 2. Streetcar on the world stage: the national premieres, 1948–1953; 3. Streetcar revivals on the English-language stage; 4. Recasting the players: expanding and radicalizing the Streetcar script; 5. Streetcar in other media; Selective production chronology; Notes; Selective bibliography of criticism of Streetcar; Index.

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