CSCI Research Series Seminar: Three Takes on Theatre

Events — Research Event MS Teams
10 March 2022, 16:00

Eugene Giddens: Performing James Shirley’s Hyde Park

James Shirley wrote Hyde Park (1632) for London’s tiny Cockpit theatre. The entire space, with stage and audience, measured just 12x12 metres, yet he managed to represent foot and horse races, distinct groupings of suitors eavesdropping, and sword fights – all in the same scene. This paper will consider the challenges of early staging and attempts at contemporary reconstructions of those original practices, including at the RSC (1987), Wanamaker (partial staging 2016), and Scenic Stage Theatre, York (2016). It will consider especially how cramped spaces work alongside Shirley’s attempts at ‘feminocentricism’ in his most famous comedy.

Eugene Giddens is Skinner-Young Professor of Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature at Anglia Ruskin University. He has taught on the literature and drama degrees and published books on early modern drama and children’s literature, including How to Read a Shakespearean Play Text (CUP, 2011) and Christmas Books for Children (CUP, 2019). His critical edition of James Shirley’s Hyde Park will be published later in 2022 with the Revels Plays (MUP).

Michelle Leonforte: A plague o’ both your (play)houses – Shakespeare’s Globe and the pandemic 

Covid restrictions and the closures of the theatres in 2020 forced sites to create and share theatre in new ways. This paper looks at Shakespeare’s Globe and its response to Covid-19, discussing key moments which the venue ‘staged’ the pandemic, and looking closely at the 2020 Macbeth: a conjuring filmed production. 

This paper has been taken from a chapter within my thesis.  

Michelle Leonforte is a PhD researcher at Anglia Ruskin University looking at the implications of reconstructed early modern theatres. She has published a review of The American Shakespeare Center’s Blackfriars theatre and 2017 fall season productions for Cahiers Elisabethains and a piece for the Folger's Shakespeare and Beyond blog.


Martin Young: Stage Managing Wasted Time

As You Like It is a play about time. This paper reads the 2015 National Theatre production through its archived Stage Management and Front of House reports, exploring how the temporal organisation of the contemporary theatrical workplace relates to the play's Early Modern concern with time-consciousness and the politics of work and leisure. 

Martin Young is a Lecturer in Drama at Anglia Ruskin University and also works as a theatre lighting designer and technician. He is a contributor to the Performance and Political Economy research group, which recently published "Marxist Keywords for Performance" in the Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism.

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CSCI Research Event - Guy Sherwin - Experimental Cinema

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