Thursday, November 19, 2015

Thursday, November 19, 2015 10:34 am by Cristina in , , , ,    No comments
Yorkshire Post reviews Northern Ballet's Wuthering Heights.
For various reasons Wuthering Heights has particular significance for me – as it has for many – so I approached Northern Ballet’s version of Emily Brontë’s classic story with some trepidation.
I had heard lots of good things about it, but would it live up to expectations? Would it be faithful to the book? And, most of all, how on earth do you translate a work of such literary complexity into a dance piece? I needn’t have worried. Aside from the fact that, like many film and stage adaptations, it only tells half the story of Emily Brontë’s original, excising the whole of the second part, the production is an absolute delight from start to finish.
Northern Ballet artistic director David Nixon’s beautifully nuanced choreography, at times robust, sexy and energetic, at others heart-breakingly tender – complemented by Claude-Michel Schoenberg’s superb score – perfectly expresses the youthful joy as well as the dangerous, destructive passions at play in the novel as Cathy and Heathcliff (Rachael Gillespie and Jeremy Curnier as the wild, carefree youngsters and Martha Leebolt and Tobias Batley as their troubled adult counterparts) hurtle towards inevitable tragedy.
There was an odd badminton playing scene (badminton, on the Yorkshire Moors?) which seemed out of place, but that’s a minor criticism of a production that is outstanding in every way. (Yvette Huddleston)
Dagens Nyheter (Sweden) also reviews a stage production of Wuthering Heights in Enskede, Stockholm.
Medan ”Brev till en ängel” står för timslång reflektion studsar Åsa Berglund Cowbums och Moments ”Svindlande höjder” in – och snart ut i egenskap av ”liten men naggande god”. Hela idén är galen men samtidigt fullkomligt oemotståndlig. Emily Brontës tegelstensroman framförd på 13 minuter i en garderob, går det? Förstås inte fast absolut. I varje fall på det här viset när själva kvintessensen av romanen, Catherines dualism i kärleken och begäret till fosterbrodern Heathcliff, samlas i en enda eruption. Envigen mellan proper yta och frustande lusta.
Sofia Rönnegård agerar prydliga Cathy men mellan hennes ben, ja faktiskt, tvingar sig också Lotta Östlin Stenshälls ”underjag” fram. Rufsig, fräck, kaxig och kåt. Det ångar på miniscenen där den sinnligt röda sammetsgradängen rymmer totalt fyra åskådare. Roligt och vasst med två suveräna aktriser. Bara att höra underjaget väsa till överjaget ”Ut med språket din snöpta hagga!” är värt turen till Gubbängen! (Pia Huss) (Translation)
El litoral (Argentina) features the novel too.
Alguien las llamó “esas inglesas locas”, escritoras excéntricas que cubren con novelas extraordinarias el panorama literario del siglo XIX. Leídas hoy, hay dos por lo menos que se revelan geniales y tan ineludibles como lo mejor de Flaubert, de Tolstoi y de Dostoievski: “Cumbres borrascosas”, de Emily Brontë, y “Middlemarch”, de George Eliot.
Cumbres...” y Emily Brontë constituyen el mayor misterio. Son la novela y la escritora más locas. Incluso para nuestro tiempo, que se regodea en el aplauso de las transgresiones más rebuscadas, todas permitidas y, por lo tanto, en cierto grado inocentes. Leyéndola hoy tenemos la misma impresión que nos dan algunas obras y biografías de la mal juzgada era victoriana, la impresión de que se estaba entonces más libre que hoy. Pasolini lo decía a propósito de las supuestas oscuridades y represiones de la Edad Media y de la Roma de los Papas: aquello tiempos, aseguraba, eran más afectos a la búsqueda del goce y de la felicidad.
Victoria Ocampo, en un notable ensayo sobre Emily Brontë, nos recuerda que “Cumbres...” se publicó en diciembre de 1847, un año antes de que muriera su autora, y que fue muy mal recibida por la crítica. Sus personajes siguen siendo tan abominables, espantosos, desenfrenados y entrañables como resultaron en aquel momento. Extremadamente contradictorios, como el retrato de Emily que pinta Somerset Maugham: “Era dura, dogmática, porfiada, hosca, colérica; y era devota, respetuosa, industriosa, impasible, paciente y tierna (...). En su timidez había tanto apocamiento como arrogancia. El genio de Emily era imprevisible y sus hermanas parecen haberle tenido miedo”. [...]
En su creación de un universo aislado, Emily se permite la fusión de la novela gótica y del realismo más exacerbado, de la ensoñación romántica y el melodrama, nadando en aguas que no evitan los oleajes de tabúes ancestrales como el incesto o la necrofilia. Extrañamente, no se ha señalado que toda la vitalidad narrativa y las proezas técnicas y la polifonía de “Cumbres...” la individualizan como un puntual antecedente de un autor clave de la literatura contemporánea y de la literatura de toda América, William Faulkner, maestro de los más grandes escritores latinoamericanos: de Rulfo a Borges, de García Márquez a Onetti. Incluso la creación de míticos locus como el condado de Yoknapatawpha, Santa María, Macondo o las orillas de los compadritos de Borges, y el vértigo genealógico de los Sartoris, los Sutpen, los Compson, los Buendía reconocen su origen en la meseta sometida a los tumultos atmosféricos del lugar llamado justamente “Cumbres...”, y en la confusión de generaciones y nombres (como los que se producen con Catherine Earnshaw, Catherine Heathcliff y Catherine Linton).
Cumbres...” es una lección de libertad en una época en la cual los narradores se someten a proyectos y reglamentos antes de comenzar a escribir sus obras. Es, sobre todo, un ejemplo de cómo una obra maestra puede mantenerse incontaminada a pesar de las varias torpes versiones cinematográficas y teatrales; de radiografías psicoanalíticas y de análisis destripadores. (Nilda Somer) (Translation)
Anime News Network looks into the origins of 'dangerous anime boys'.
Gothic romance stories were set in old castles at exotic locales (like Italy, which was exotic for 18th-century Brits), filled with naïve ingénues falling for tormented men who were never what they seemed on the surface. This trope also led to the Byronic hero of later 19th-century novels, like Wuthering Heights and Jane Eyre. The most popular modern-day example would be Tom Hiddleston's sympathetic and charismatic portrayal of the villain Loki in the Marvel movie-verse, which won him fathoms of fangirls. Predictably, he went on from there to play a textbook Byronic hero in Guillermo del Toro's Gothic romance movie, Crimson Peak.
However, in many of the earlier Gothic romance novels, these men were just as likely to be cautionary tales as romantic ideals. With the advent of Romanticism in the 19th century, and its emphasis on emotional expression over moral righteousness, this changed more permanently into everyone's "favorite" bad-boy trope... (Rose Bridges)
The Independent Florida Alligator discusses boys/guys too:
Straight dudes have liked women, it seems, for a while now. And they’ve written about it for just as long. Women have written about liking men — and other women — but you probably didn’t find too much of this on your high school reading lists or bookshelves, with the probable exception of the works of the Brontë sisters. Instead, you were probably left with John Green novels, Morrissey lyrics and the like to make sense of the romantic world. (Neel Bapatla)
io9 considers Emily Brontë a cat lady:
But cats hold a special attraction for literary types. Harriet Beecher Stowe was a cat lady, who frequently perched her cat on her shoulder while she wrote. Emily Brontë loved cats, and wrote an essay in which she defended them from detractors who claimed that they were cruel and aloof. (Given the way she wrote Heathcliff in Wuthering Heights, she might have a different frame of reference for cruelty and aloofness than the rest of us.) (Esther Inglis-Arkell)
According to Mercury News, Jane Eyre is one of '35 classic books for kids'.
"Jane Eyre," Charlotte Brontë: This literary classic from 1847 follows its title character as she grows into adulthood, becomes a governess and falls in love with her Byronic boss. "I love giving 'Jane Eyre' to older, passionate readers and not only because it's my favorite book in the whole world," says [Shosana Smith, buyer and manager at The Reading Bug bookstore in San Carlos]. "The story is so beautifully written, rich with detail and real depth of feeling. Not to mention early feminist themes, scandalous for its time!" (Martha Ross)
And more on kids and reading as Mankato Homeschooling Examiner tells about a reading programme developed by Mensa for Kids.
Here's a wonderful way to encourage kids to read and to really give them a challenge. Mensa for Kids has developed the Excellence in Reading Award that gives children and teens a certificate of achievement and t-shirt if they successfully read all of the books on their age-appropriate recommended book lists. Kids can even listen to the books read aloud or on tape to qualify.
The program is designed for readers at four reading levels and has a list of books (and sometimes short stories and poems) to be read for each level. Mensa for Kids points out that children should read according to their abilities, not necessarily their true grade levels. Children may listen to the books being read aloud by parents, listen to audio books or read them online, as well as reading them themselves. Each list contains an impressive variety of books. [...]
The 9-12th grade list contains over one hundred novels, short stories and poetry compilations. Included are Beowulf, Of Mice and Men, Uncle Tom's Cabin, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, Anna Karenina, Walden, Of Human Bondage, The Scarlet Letter, The Turn of the Screw, My Antonia, The Cherry Orchard, 1984, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, Wuthering Heights, To Kill a Mockingbird, The Iliad, Emily Dickinson's complete works and Moby Dick, just to name a few. (Alicia Bayer)
And yet according to Patheos' Catholic Authenticity,
Seriously, melancholic teenagers should never be allowed to read Wuthering Heights or Romantic poetry. (Melinda Selmys)
La razón (Spain) reviews Ángeles Caso's Todo ese fuego.
A la bronteana manera, Ángeles Caso nos transmite ese aroma literario que emanaban las hermanas, hasta el punto de parecer criaturas descritas por ellas mismas. En el punto de equilibrio entre la novela y la Historia se sitúan estas páginas conformadas con idéntica dosis de ternura y reivindicación. Al concluirlo, damos más valor, si cabe, a la obra de las hermanas, entendiéndola como una lucha contra lo políticamente correcto y lo moralmente debido. (Ángeles López) (Translation)
The Guardian's film blog on Paranormal Activity: Ghost Dimension:
I called in a demon slayer and part-time exorcist, and he told me that the only way I could get the evil little girls to leave my house was to download a copy of Paranormal Activity: Ghost Dimension on to somebody else’s computer. This was a trick he’d learned from watching The Ring. I tried to do it to a jerk in the local coffee shop who’s always gasbagging into his Bluetooth while I’m trying to read Charlotte Brontë’s Villette in peace, but the Mac Air doesn’t have a DVD drive, and anyway the film requires a PC. So that approach wasn’t going to work. (Joe Queenan)
Stepabout reviews Jane Eyre.

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