Sunday, November 22, 2015

Sunday, November 22, 2015 11:38 am by M. in , , , , ,    No comments
Nouse reviews the University of York's performances of  Lucy Gough's Wuthering Heights:
So something has to give when you compress a long, nuanced novel into a stage play, and unfortunately, Gough’s adaptation didn’t just condense but mercilessly stabbed, hacked and butchered Brontë’s novel. Particularly in the first half, scenes were disjointed with sporadic explosions of melodrama, which was not at all aided by the strained non-naturalistic tableau sequences that further disrupted the play’s already non-existent progression. The structural disorderliness did nothing to provide the sense of character development so critical to the story.
That said, despite the difficulty such a compressed play poses, there managed to be exceptional performances by some of the cast members.  (...)
At times, some scenes were so overly dramatic that they felt like caricatures of Brontë’s: it isn’t a good sign when the audience laughs when there is supposed to be great tension. (...)
Taking on Wuthering Heights is a highly ambitious endeavour worth commending on the Herculean (and maybe, with Gough’s adaptation, Sisyphean) effort alone, but perhaps more should be done to subsidise the script’s weaknesses and limitations. Either way, the play promises to be thought-provoking and is worth watching. (Deborah Lam)
The Telegraph & Argus reports the display of the Brontës' quilt at the Parsonage and other things going on at the Museum:
In addition, visitors who come between now and December 6 are in for a special treat as the hand-sewn patchwork quilt worked on by the Brontë sisters will be on display for the first time since the 1980s.
The quilt measures 187cm by 214cm and consists of silks, taffetas, velvets and cotton which may have been taken from old Brontë dresses. Don’t miss this rare opportunity to see it.
Christmas is fast approaching and our museum shop is bursting with gifts for literature lovers everywhere.
On Thursday, November 26 the shop will be open until 8pm. The rooms of the parsonage will be decorated for Christmas and we encourage visitors to explore the museum and then join us for a glass of sherry and a spot of festive shopping.
Entry to the shop is free, but usual admission prices apply to the museum.
On Saturday December 5 we are holding a Christmas craft workshop for all the family. Come and join artist Rachel Lee and make a tree decoration from recycled fabric, blankets or maybe an old jumper!
The workshop will run between 11am and 4pm and is free with entrance to the museum.
Finally some exciting news. Haworth and the Parsonage are great locations for film and TV and with Charlotte’s bicentenary year just around the corner, we are receiving even more media enquiries than usual.
We are very excited to be working with BBC Bristol on their documentary Living Like A Brontë and are looking forward to welcoming them to the Parsonage next month.
The one-hour programme will be presented by Martha Kearney, Lucy Mangan and Helen Oyeyemi and will air on BBC2 in the spring.
Filming will culminate with a re-enactment of Charlotte’s marriage to Arthur Bell Nicholls and everyone is invited.
The BBC would like residents of Haworth and the surrounding area to line Church Street and celebrate as Charlotte leaves the church on her wedding day.
We think this will be a lovely way in which to end the year and hope that you would like to join us.
Filming will take place outside the museum on Friday, December 11 and anyone interested should contact rebecca.yorke@bronte.org.uk in order to receive further information as details become available.
The Sunday Times analyses Emily Brontë's poem Long Neglect Has Worn Away:

This is an account of neglect with a sting in the tail: that the elegant hand  that made the image promised to be ever true, yet has obviously failed to be  so. We might wonder whether it is a painting or a person that is being  talked about, because a smile might fade just as easily on a real face. In  the second verse are we being asked to imagine how beautiful the picture  once was, or to consider how the (...)

We wonder whose house was visited by the actress Zoe Rainey as she is interviewed in the Belfast Telegraph:
"I do have an appreciation of feminism, I went to Brontë sisters' home in Sheffield and it was incredible to see where they wrote back then. And I saw where Beatrix Potter lived, she was the first to come up with merchandising. To think she and the Brontës were able to do all that in the man's world they inhabited then is wonderful."
Why Sheffield?

The Guardian explores the 'rise of present tense' in modern fiction and quotes Hilary Mantel saying:
“In fact, it’s nothing new to anybody. There are bits of Jane Eyre and Villette that jump into the present tense, where the focus is rapidly narrowed – there’s a tracking shot. We use the language of the cinema to describe it, but the technique predates cinema. Charlotte Brontë’s technique puts the reader and the writer in the same space, as well as in the same moment; you cannot separate them.” (Richard Lea)
The Sacramento Bee lists some of most expected 2016 novels, among them:
In “Jane Steele,” Edgar Award nominee Lyndsay Faye takes readers on a grimly seductive odyssey in the shadows of Charles Dickens and Charlotte Brontë (Putnam, $27, 432 pages; March 22). Jane conceals her murderous past and true identity to move into Highgate House, which she stands to inherit. There, she survives the intrigue to find the love she’s been seeking – but it comes at a dear price. (Allen Pierleoni)
The Daily Mail asks Gaby Roslin for her favourite(s):
The first classic I ever read was Wuthering Heights. My mother handed it to me and I absolutely dissolved into it. 
The Wanderer describes a wedding in a library (with Jane Eyre readings and all);  Les Soeurs Brontë posts an interesting 'update' on the Richmond portrait of Charlotte Brontë adding some of the details probably softened by the artist.

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