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The Chemistry of the Theatre
 
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The Chemistry of the Theatre
Performativity of Time
 
 
Palgrave Macmillan
 
 
 
 
 
17 Sep 2010
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£58.00
|Hardback In Stock
  
9780230241114
||
 
 
eBooks ebook on Palgrave Connect  ebook available via library subscriptions ebook on ebooks.com 
 
 


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DescriptionReviewsContentsAuthors

Dealing with the most difficult problems concerning theatre, such as time, space, acting, language and conventions, this theoretical work approaches each of these complex issues from a temporal perspective, demonstrating that the majority of the basic issues linked to theatre may be discussed and analysed in this light.  Through this innovative approach, acting is defined as the art of creating fictional present time. Similarly, instead of analyzing the language used on the stage, the author discusses 'stage speech', which is not phonetic, but iconic: in theatre one not only listens to the words, but also 'watches them'. Jerzy Limon also demonstrates that theatre is substance-specific; that creating fiction is not the only goal of the art, and that what really counts is the relationship of the denoted fictional world to the material substance that is selected and modeled ad hoc for a given performance. The two spheres, divided by the 'fifth wall', are governed by two different streams of time, enabling us to discuss all theatre phenomena from a temporal perspective. Using a number of examples of recent, outstanding productions, mostly of Shakespeare's plays, the book does not conduct an analysis of particular meanings created on a given night, but shows the reader how such meanings were created.


Description

Dealing with the most difficult problems concerning theatre, such as time, space, acting, language and conventions, this theoretical work approaches each of these complex issues from a temporal perspective, demonstrating that the majority of the basic issues linked to theatre may be discussed and analysed in this light.  Through this innovative approach, acting is defined as the art of creating fictional present time. Similarly, instead of analyzing the language used on the stage, the author discusses 'stage speech', which is not phonetic, but iconic: in theatre one not only listens to the words, but also 'watches them'. Jerzy Limon also demonstrates that theatre is substance-specific; that creating fiction is not the only goal of the art, and that what really counts is the relationship of the denoted fictional world to the material substance that is selected and modeled ad hoc for a given performance. The two spheres, divided by the 'fifth wall', are governed by two different streams of time, enabling us to discuss all theatre phenomena from a temporal perspective. Using a number of examples of recent, outstanding productions, mostly of Shakespeare's plays, the book does not conduct an analysis of particular meanings created on a given night, but shows the reader how such meanings were created.


Reviews

This is a truly groundbreaking account of theater's chemistry, especially as it relates to time, space, and affect. Having been the Artistic Director of the Gdańsk International Shakespeare Festival for over 14 years, where many of the world's best theatre companies and directors present their work, Limon really knows contemporary theater. He brings this knowledge to this book with remarkable ingenuity and eloquence. The Chemistry of the Theatre is a spectacular accomplishment and a major contribution to theatre studies. - Professor Bryan Reynolds, University of California, Irvine, USA


Contents

Preface
PART I: THE CHEMISTRY OF THE THEATRE
Reading the Elements and Compounds
The Chemical Formula of Blending
Chemical Reactions , or, Blending the Components 
PART II: THE CHEMICAL LAB 
Sculpting the Space, or the Retorts at Play
Sculpting the Time, or the Magical Binder
Sculpting the Language, or Stage Speech
Sculpting the Body, or Embodied Time
PART III: RETORTS OF TIME: TEMPORAL CONVENTIONS
Soliloquies& Asides: Who's There?
Theatre-within-the-theatre, or Time-Within-the-Time
Conclusion
Bibliography
Index


Authors

JERZY LIMON is Professor at the English Institute, University of Gdańsk, Poland. He has published widely on various topics, including three academic books published in English (Gentlemen of a Company, Dangerous Matter, and The Masque of Stuart Culture), and five books that have appeared in Polish; the list of publications includes also over a hundred articles. His most recent works include a book on the theory of 'television theatre', Obroty przestrzeni (Moving Spaces), and articles in such journals as Theatre Research International, Shakespeare Jahrbuch, Journal of Drama Theory and Criticism, New Theatre Quarterly and Cahiers Élisabéthains.  Limon's literary output includes four published novels and translations of plays by William Shakespeare, Thomas Middleton, Philip Massinger and Tom Stoppard. He also runs a theatre project in Gdańsk, which aims at reconstructing an Elizabethan-in-style theatre there, and organizes an annual International Shakespeare Festival.