Drama: Play, Performance, Perception (1978– )

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A Good Slice of Theater
24 October 2008 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

I watched 13 episodes of this for a Theater Studies class at City College of San Francisco. Overall, it was a good collection of abridged plays, introduced informatively by good ol' Jose.

The plays were as follows: Miss Julie - August Strindberg (featuring Patrick Stewart!) Peer Gynt - Henrick Ibsen The Wild Duck - Henrick Ibsen The Three Sisters - Anton Chekhov The Ghost Sonata - August Strindberg Oedipus Tyrannus - Sophocles (featuring Patrick Stewart again!) Macbeth - Shakespeare Woyzeck - Georg Buchner St. Joan - Bernard Shaw The Venetian Twins - Carlo Goldoni The Way of the World - William Congreve Ubu Roi - Alfred Jarry (featuring Donald Pleasance!) Sizwe Banzi is Dead - Athol Fugerd, John Kani and Winston Ntosha Six Characters in Search of an Author - Luigi Pirandello

I'm not sure if these plays were put on just for this series, or if it drew from stock TV productions that were shown in full elsewhere. I also don't know if there were just 13 episodes.

Some I enjoyed more than others, but all were nicely performed. The guy playing Peer Gynt was a bit pretentious (somewhere between Shatner and Brando)...Patrick Stewart was magnificent as ever. It's fun to discover he's had the exact same majestic voice for over 30 years. Donald Pleasance was GREAT as Pa Ubu. Reminded me a lot of Rod Steiger in "Fistful of Dynamite" (or Eli Wallach in the Good the Bad and the Ugly). His daughter Angela did nicely as Joan of Arc.

Those are most of the bits that stood out off the top of my head.

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