Browsing articles tagged with " dramaturgy"

The Kilroys: A Prequel

Aug 4, 2014   //   by Kate Powers   //   Director's Notebook

Some Essential Women Playwrights of the 20th & 21st Centuries

In June, the Kilroys released their fantastic and important list of most recommended new plays by women. In July, partly in preparation to teach a course entitled Women in Theatre, partly because many of them have been on …

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They went and died about it: Staging an incarcerated cemetery

Jun 6, 2013   //   by Kate Powers   //   Director's Notebook, Incarcerated performers

You can’t take an intermission at Sing Sing, and you cannot have a blackout.

Well, this year, a blackout was not available to us because the lights never go out in the room where we presented the play and because the circuits in that space couldn’t handle the wattage of …

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It’s clearing up. The stars are coming out.

Mar 4, 2013   //   by Kate Powers   //   Director's Notebook, Incarcerated performers

The individuals on the play selection committee all said that they wanted a comedy, or at least a story with some lighter moments in it.  Over the course of several months, my colleagues and I made almost three dozen suggestions that fit the committee’s criteria, which include having a dozen …

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This play is called Our Town: 75 years in Grover’s Corners (part III of III)

Jan 30, 2013   //   by Kate Powers   //   Director's Notebook

No curtain. No scenery.

Wilder wrote that he was trying to restore significance to the small details of life by stripping away the scenery, “Theatre longs to represent the symbols of things, not the things themselves.”  Elsewhere, he observed, “Moliere said that for the theatre all he needed was a …

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This play is called Our Town: 75 years in Grover’s Corners (part II of III)

Jan 30, 2013   //   by Kate Powers   //   Director's Notebook

First we want a little more information about the town

There seems to be a nearly universal anxiety about the potential for the play to become mawkish in production, coupled with a rehearsal room realization that it is anything but maudlin. “Lots of directors go to it without a sense …

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This play is called Our Town: 75 years in Grover’s Corners (part I of III)

Jan 27, 2013   //   by Kate Powers   //   Director's Notebook

 

Thornton Wilder as the Stage Manager in Our Town, 1938.

Once upon a time in October 1937, Thornton Wilder wrote to his dear friend, Gertrude Stein, “I can no longer conceal from you that I’m writing the most beautiful little play you can imagine… It’s a little play …

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Action, Meet Word

Jul 3, 2012   //   by Kate Powers   //   Director's Notebook, Shakespeare

In Sunday’s Washington Post, Peter Marks opines the demise of men in tights and the ascent of the high concept.  He writes, “It is the fashion in these meddling times — now perhaps more than ever — to put the doublets in mothballs and tie up Shakespeare in the …

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Law & Order: Denmark

Nov 16, 2011   //   by Kate Powers   //   Director's Notebook, Incarcerated performers, Shakespeare

Last night, we put Claudius on trial.

Miching mallecho

If you’ve been reading my blog or following me on Twitter, you probably know that I’m teaching a Shakespeare workshop at Sing Sing Correctional Facility this autumn, that the men were curious but deeply skeptical about Shakespeare when we began.  A …

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Nay, answer me

Nov 9, 2011   //   by Kate Powers   //   Director's Notebook, Incarcerated performers, Shakespeare

I’m sitting in a run-down classroom as the sun slowly sets on the other side of the Hudson River.  The windows are threaded with metal, and there are metal grates on the outside of the glass.  Every so often, a corrections officer walks past the door.  Twelve men sit with …

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The strip of (textual) terror

Dec 13, 2010   //   by Kate Powers   //   Coaching Tips, Director's Notebook, Shakespeare

[This post originally appeared on www.2amtheatre.com, which is a very cool place to appear.]

Collation line.  Apparatus.  Strip of terror.  Whatever you call it, it’s that somewhat inscrutable line or two of apparently Enigma code between the text and the annotations, particularly in a modern edition of, say, Shakespeare.  …

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A Christmas Carol by Dickens, adapt by J Kimbell / K Powers

Nov 12, 2010   //   by Kate Powers   //   Productions

Overview

In September 2006, Jon Kimbell approached me about co-directing A Christmas Carol with him at North Shore Music Theater this season.

North Shore has been producing Carol for the past 18 seasons, and Jon felt that the production had gotten both a bit stale and a bit adrift from …

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Fräulein Else by Arthur Schnitzler, adapted by Amy de Lucia

Nov 11, 2010   //   by Kate Powers   //   Producing, Productions

Overview

Amy de Lucia first approached me with a copy of Arthur Schnitzler’s novella Fräulein Else in 1999, while we were working on How I Learned to Drive in Bangor, ME. Amy said she felt sure that there was a play in there, if only she could figure out how …

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Measure for Measure by William Shakespeare

Nov 10, 2010   //   by Kate Powers   //   Productions

Prologue

While I was pursuing my M.A. at the Shakespeare Institute, I studied with Dr. John Jowett, who has done a tremendous amount of work on attribution studies in general, and the relationship between Shakespeare and Thomas Middleton in particular. I was particularly intrigued by his scholarship with regard to…

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Talking amiss of her: speech, silence and shrewishness in The Taming of the Shrew

Jan 2, 2002   //   by Kate Powers   //   Director's Notebook

[I wrote this essay as part of my graduate work at the Shakespeare Institute, Stratford-upon-Avon, UK.]

“Surely we’re trying to find out at the beginning what we mean by ‘shrew’. Supposing we said ‘shrew’ equals ‘noisy one’. Along comes a man to tame the noisy one. And for almost five

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Open stage to empty space: the Granville-Barker inheritance

Jan 1, 2002   //   by Kate Powers   //   Director's Notebook

[I wrote this essay as part of my graduate work at the Shakespeare Institute, Stratford-upon-Avon, UK.]

Harley Granville-Barker’s dramaturgical criticism has transformed our collective perception of Shakespeare’s plays. Full stop. Once he had completed his work as a director and as an analyst, it would no longer be defensible to …

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Shakespeare can transform a human heart.
– Curt Tofteland, Shakespeare Behind Bars

You lie, in faith, for you are called plain Kate,
And bonny Kate, and sometimes Kate the curst;
But Kate, the prettiest Kate in Christendom,
Kate of Kate Hall, my super-dainty Kate,
For dainties are all Kates, and therefore, Kate,
Take this of me, Kate of my consolation…
--The Taming of the Shrew, Act II, scene i