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Staging Shakespeare's Late Plays$
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Roger Warren

Print publication date: 1990

Print ISBN-13: 9780198128779

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198128779.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
Staging Shakespeare's Late Plays

Roger Warren

Oxford University Press

In the autumn of 1984, Peter Hall, the then Director of the National Theatre, publicized that Shakespeare's late plays – Pericles, Cymbeline, and The Winter's Tale – would be staged at the smallest of the three houses of the National Theatre, the Cottesloe. Although this may have been the perfect venue for staging these plays, and staging these plays would present an opportunity to explore the theatrical issues within the play, these were hindered because the National Theatre experienced a financial crisis. During the delay leading up to the production, Peter Hall contemplated about replacing Pericles with The Tempest for two reasons. Firstly, he did not want to leave out the most challenging of Shakespeare's late plays; and secondly, Hall's method of construing Shakespeare relies on a meticulous textual investigation and is not without a strict observation of the verse. This book, therefore, attempts to look further into the rehearsals and shows of this particular play season.

Keywords:   Peter Hall, director, National Theatre, Pericles, Cymbeline, The Winter's Tale, The Tempest

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