Monday, May 14, 2007

To read or not to read

Over on his blog, nytheatre mike, a reviewer for nytheatre.com, has an interesting thread going on: Should reviewers read a play before they go to review it? He's of two minds about the issue, whereas his editor, Martin Denton, "would unequivocally say that a reviewer should NEVER read a script before seeing a show." I presented the case of our Q1 Hamlet, asking whether one isn't in danger of bringing Folio assumptions into the First Quarto performance if one doesn't read Q1 first. It is, after all, a different play in some respects... Having never read Q1, mike argues for a blind experience in this case, asking, "How often does one get introduced to 'Hamlet' all over again for the first time?" Hmmm. True, but then I would definitely say, as Martin suggests, that the reviewer should read the play afterwards to verify what s/he just saw and avoid the pittfalls of what s/he THINKS s/he knows about the play.

Meanwhile, over at mirroruptolife, YS requests that, "When reviewing productions of Hamlet, could print critics, bloggers, etc., please refrain from using the headline that plays on the phrase, 'Get thee to a nunnery?'" YS muses that surely we can come up with better pull-quotables and asks for suggestions, getting the list started herself with:

"Bound in Postmodernism, This Prince is Still King!"
"Alas, Poor Shakespeare. They Slew Him, Horatio!"

and my personal favorite, "Elsi-Snore"

5 comments:

Michael said...

All of YS's pull-quote/headline ideas are keepers, for sure.

(P.S. Thanks very much for the linkage and for reading the blog. The comment you left was terrific.)

Jason said...

for a little Q1 flavor, how 'bout "and how they abhor me?"

had fight rehearsal for the Vampire Cowboys Theater Co.'s Living Dead In Denmark last night -good for a few chuckles to realize the extent to which I'm reliving last summer all over again (in concentrated form...) rehearsing Hamlet one night, then my Kung-Fu fighting Zombie Hamlet the next...we'll see how they influence each other...

gaby said...

Thanks, Michael, de nada.

And Jason... just don't Kung-Fu me in the closet scene, ok?!

Jason said...

was actually thinking of taking out polonius/corambis with a series of roundhouse kicks to the head. kevin's only about 6'2 right?

gaby said...

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http://ratconference.com/gaby/yellowbook.jpg