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Jack Teiwes

Nick Enright said that collaboration was one of his favourite aspects of the theatrical process, and it is only fitting that one of the high points of his career was the collaborative experience of adapting Tim Winton’s novel Cloudstreet to the stage. Working in partnership with his former student Justin Monjo, Enright created a rare piece of theatre which came to be hailed by many critics and patrons alike as the most significant Australian play since Summer of the Seventeenth Doll. A phenomenal success upon its opening at the 1998 Festival of Sydney, Enright and Monjo’s Cloudstreet proceeded to tour Australia and overseas to great acclaim over the next three years.

La passion du théâtre

Camus à la scène

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Edited by Sophie Bastien, Geraldine F. Montgomery and Mark Orme

Voici enfin une somme critique consacrée aux multiples facettes de la relation entre Albert Camus et la scène de théâtre. Réunissant des exégètes camusiens aussi bien que des théâtrologues et des professionnels de la scène, elle embrasse une pluralité d’approches et de sensibilités. La première de ses quatre parties se concentre sur le répertoire dramatique de Camus : les pièces de son cru autant que ses adaptations scéniques de romans, ses traductions de pièces étrangères et les créations collectives. La seconde partie considère le praticien qui a expérimenté tous les métiers de la scène, et la veine théorique qu’il développe dans certains textes de réflexion. L’ensemble de cette première moitié du livre couvre ses nombreux accomplissements reliés au théâtre ; celui-ci apparaît dans toute sa polymorphie comme une sphère d’activité permanente sur le parcours camusien. La suite du livre examine la fortune scénique remarquable non seulement du corpus dramatique mais aussi de récits camusiens : d’abord en France (c’est l’objet de la troisième partie), puis à l’étranger (c’est l’objet de la quatrième et dernière partie). D’une façon inusitée, en se penchant sur la vie théâtrale contemporaine, elle met vigoureusement au jour l’actualité de l’œuvre fictive de Camus à l’échelle occidentale.

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Julian Meyrick

Nick Enright and Terence Clarke’s musical adaptation of The Venetian Twins was a key production both for the Nimrod Theatre in particular and Australian “New Wave” artists in general. Its success as part of the Interim Season at the Sydney Opera House in 1979 confirmed that a latter-day “popular theatre” aesthetic had well and truly arrived. But a close look at the adaptation raises complicated questions about the nature of New Wave self-description. The judgement at the time that the play was lightweight and throwaway can now be seen to be false. So what exactly was “popular” about the production, and how were “popular theatre” techniques deployed in transposing Goldoni’s original material? This chapter focuses on the literary detail of the adaptation to show that part of the reason for its success lay in its use of a new polyglot cultural consciousness – not a rejection of classical dramatic conventions, but their subtle and winning renovation.

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Susan Lever

Most of Nick Enright’s screenplays were adaptations from other texts, or the telling of other people’s stories, and he wrote the award-winning scripts for Lorenzo’s Oil and Come in Spinner in collaboration with other writers. Nevertheless, all of Enright’s screenplays function like morality plays, asking questions about individual responsibility and the values of contemporary society. Often the moral questions focus on the body, particularly of a woman or child. In Come in Spinner, the women must deal with the implications of their sexual bodies; in Lorenzo’s Oil, the disintegrating body of Lorenzo Odone is central; in Blackrock, the dead and raped body of the girl lies behind a boy’s guilt; in ‘Coral Island’ Martin confronts AIDS. In each case, physical decline or destruction presents some moral crisis, particularly a central male character’s sense of guilt. This chapter examines the way that Enright allows these individual physical crises to reflect on the moral state of society. It gives particular attention to Lorenzo’s Oil and the complex way that Enright and Miller present conflicting aspects of attitudes to the body and the mind, the intellect and humanity.

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Marie Saint Martin

La réception des textes antiques est largement conditionnée par l’usage de traductions qui en permettent l’accès à un public non spécialiste. La mise en relation de ces traductions avec les adaptations assumées – et alors même que la frontière entre ces deux modes d’inspiration est peu claire avant le XIXe siècle – souligne des points de résistance parfois inattendus à l’égard des textes originaux. Dans le cas de l’Électre de Sophocle, la comparaison entre quatre traductions, échelonnées sur une période de deux cents ans, met en évidence, à partir de la deuxième moitié du XVIIe siècle et jusqu’à la deuxième moitié du XVIIIe siècle, en France, une opposition grandissante au matricide, élément pourtant fondamental de l’intrigue grecque. Cela n’empêche pas les traducteurs et les dramaturges, après Dacier, de faire de cette pièce l’un des modèles de l’aristotélisme, et l’une des sources importantes pour la scène moderne.

Conrad's Victory

The Play and Reviews

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Edited by Richard J. Hand

Basil Macdonald Hastings’s dramatization of Joseph Conrad’s Victory enjoyed a run of over eighty performances at London’s Globe Theatre in 1919 with actor-producer Marie Löhr in the role of Lena. It remains the most successful stage adaptation of Conrad’s fiction and Conrad himself was closely involved in the development of the script.
This generously illustrated volume presents the complete script of Macdonald Hastings’s play, the collected theatre reviews of the production, and the stage censor’s confidential report on the script. The volume also features a substantial introduction placing the original novel and its subsequent dramatization in a stimulating critical and cultural context.

Nick Enright

An Actor’s Playwright

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Edited by Anne Pender and Susan Lever

Nick Enright (1950-2003) was one of Australia’s most significant and successful playwrights. As a writer, director, actor and teacher he influenced theatre in Australia for thirty years. Enright wrote more than fifty plays for the stage, film, television and radio, translated and adapted more, and taught acting to students in varied settings, both in Australia and the United States. His writing repertoire included comedy, social realism, farce, fantasy and the musical. In addition to his prodigious contribution to all of these genres, he was a passionate advocate for the actor and the theatre in contemporary society.
In this volume Anne Pender and Susan Lever present a set of essays and recollections about Nick Enright’s work for students, teachers and scholars. The book offers a comprehensive study of Enright’s writing for theatre, film and television. Scholars, acting teachers and theatre directors have contributed to this work each illuminating an aspect of Enright’s remarkable career. The discussions cover interpretations of Enright’s scripts and productions, detailed analysis of his directing style, substantial background and analysis of his writing for musicals, as well as accounts of his specific approach to acting and to adaptation across genres. The essays and recollections included in this book will inspire theatre practitioners as well as scholars. Most importantly, this book will inform and enlighten students and teachers both at high school and university about an exceptional career in the theatre.

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Edited by Charmian Brinson and Richard Dove

This volume focuses on the contribution of German-speaking refugees from Nazism to the performing arts in Britain, evaluating their role in broadcasting, theatre, film and dance from 1933 to the present. It contains essays evaluating the role of refugee artists in the BBC German Service, including the actor Martin Miller, the writer Bruno Adler and the journalist Edmund Wolf. Miller also made a career in the English theatre transcending the barrier of language, as did the actor Gerhard Hinze, whose transition to the English stage is an instructive example of adaptation to a new theatre culture. In film, language problems were mitigated by the technical possibilities of the medium, although stars like Anton Walbrook received coaching in English. Certainly, technicians from Central Europe, like the cameraman Wolf Suschitzky, helped establish the character of British film in the 1950s and 1960s. In dance theatre, language played little role, facilitating the influence in Britain of dance practitioners like Kurt Jooss and Sigurd Leeder. Finally, evaluating the reverse influence of émigrés on Germany, two essays discuss Erich Fried’s translations of Shakespeare and Peter Zadek’s early theatre career in Germany.

Missed Understandings

A Study of Stage Adaptations of the Works of James Joyce

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José Lanters