Monday, April 24, 2017

Monday, April 24, 2017 11:25 am by Cristina in , , , , , ,    No comments
The Gay UK gives 4 stars to Sally Cookson's Jane Eyre.
Charlotte Brontë’s seminal work needs very little introduction and under the impressive direction of Sally Cookson, the story is beautifully brought to life in this National Theatre production, using a slew of innovative and varied theatrical techniques to provide a highly contemporary take on a classic tale. The set, consisting of a white curtained backdrop and multi-level wooden platforms accessed by a series of ladders and steps proves to be incredibly versatile and surprisingly effective in its portrayal of the various locations. The cast scramble over the set with energy and enthusiasm as they portray multiple characters meaning that there is an almost constant flow of movement on stage.  Simple props and a healthy dose of imagination on behalf of the audience provide for an effective, original and inventive presentation.
Nadia Clifford’s portrayal of the titular character is one which is full of confidence, life and determination, and Tim Delap’s performance as Rochester compliments it well, with his aloof and brooding quirkiness. Overseeing events is Melanie Marshall, who observes and narrates key aspects of Eyre’s life with bursts of jazz infused song utilising her beautiful and distinctive voice. The remainder of the cast play numerous roles with clear demarcation between characters and, in the case of Paul Mundell, with a little humour injected into the proceedings.
Quite what Brontë purists will make of the production is unknown, as, whilst the production sticks closely to the source material and lifts out text, passage and prose from it, this is not your run of the mill period costume drama. Instead, it is a refreshingly inventive, highly stylised and imaginatively presented piece which never loses the spirit of the novel, and which is as trailblazing and as forward thinking as the central character herself. (Paul Szabo)
And The Reviews Hub also gives 4 stars out of 5 to We Are Brontë, summing it up as 'joyous'.
Although based on a recognised stimulus of the Brontë sisters, there is certainly nothing predictable about this highly entertaining devised fringe comedy. Encompassing genres of improvisation, stand-up, clown and physical theatre, this show is simply unlike anything else.
Set in the rolling hills of Yorkshire, the devisers and performers Sarah Corbett and Angus Barr, transport their audience to the fictional and real world of the Brontës and share a patchwork collage of gothic physical imagery. From the beginning there is a delightful honesty to the show as the fourth wall is immediately broken, hacking that comfortable barrier and opening up a dialogue in the room – complete with an entirely random Q&A session halfway though. This becomes the crux of the production, with the performers frequently coming out of character and offering a sustained stream of witty self-commentary. By playing up to the role of performers putting on a show, a joyous parody of theatre-making is allowed to emerge; a giggle at the fact that theatre isn’t real life and is just a silly game and boy, do they play.
Through exceptional comic timing and a genuine ear for the audience, Corbett and Barr keep the room alive through their craft. Barr, the seeming brains of the operation, holds the higher, more assertive status out of the two and frequently converses with the audience, much to Corbett’s horror. He has a wonderfully childish energy to him and his improvisational skills are something to be commended and awed. Corbett, on the other hand, with expressions that are fascinatingly hypnotic, full of energy, dynamism and vulnerability, perfectly compliments her counterpart and too has an admirable commitment to her craft. Complete with ramshackle props, both the performers are possessed with play as they construct a ridiculous and hysterical narrative that, despite its complete absurdity, contains creative, clever and romantic images. To see two adults fully at play is rare but absolutely uplifting and an aspect sometimes sadly forgotten about in theatre.
To put it simply – the show is unreservedly silly, and a truly unique experience that no audience member will see the same of twice. A fringe piece through and through, it is utterly untameable; much like Cathy Earnshaw herself or even the wigs featured in the production that certainly have a mind of their own. (Sophie Huggins)
And more Brontës on stage as Entertainment Focus recommends The Tenant of Wildfell Hall on stage at York Theatre Royal from April 26th.

Mid-day has an article on Mumbai's Sewri Cemetery and suggests looking out
for James Taylor's grave. We dug deeper (pun intended) in the city's libraries to discover that this Secretary of the Bombay Chamber of Commerce as well as the Royal Asiatic Society, a Scotsman, had proposed to English author Charlotte Brontë when he came to India to set up an Indian branch of a publishing firm. She turned him down. Charlotte didn't want to settle in India and though they maintained a long distance correspondence for years, it didn't work out eventually. Who knows if Jane Eyre would have had a Bombay twist had Brontë accepted Taylor's proposal! (Fiona Fernandez)
Many years ago, Charlotte Cory also wrote about finding James Taylor's grave.

A few weeks ago, writer Hunter Davies shared with iNews a picture from one of the diaries of his late wife, also writer Margaret Forster. On it, she rated several Brontë works and Brontë-related books.

Source

Talky Movie
(Italy) recommends Jane Eyre 2011 as one of several films to watch when you'd like to be on your own.
Jane Eyre fugge da Thornfield House, la residenza dove lavora come governante per il ricco Edward Rochester. L’isolamento e l’austerità del luogo, oltre alla freddezza di Mr. Rochester, hanno infatti lasciato in segno sulla giovane Jane, nonostante la scorza dura che la vita in orfanotrofio le aveva fatto sviluppare. Riflettendo sul suo passato, e ritrovando la sua naturale curiosità, Jane farà ritorno alla dimora di Mr. Rochester e al terribile segreto che egli nasconde. (Noemi Purpura) (Translation)
La dépêche (France) features comic illustrator Pascal Croci and the projects he'd like to carry out.
Il aimerait aussi réaliser un album sur le camp d'extermination de Treblinka, en Pologne, sur Hiltler, sur le massacre des Indiens et sur une autre héroïne féminine chère à son cœur, Jane Eyre. (M.-Ch. B) (Translation)
Spanish writer Javier Marías tells about finishing his 15th novel in El País (Spain) and dreams of a future novel with a name for a title.
El título todavía no está decidido, pero podría ser este nombre, Berta Isla, para inscribirme en una larguísima y a menudo noble tradición: la de Jane Eyre, Anna Karenina, Oliver Twist, David Copperfield, Madame Bovary, Robinson Crusoe, Tess de los d’Urberville, Eugénie Grandet, Tom Jones, Tristram Shandy, Moll Flanders, Daisy Miller, Jean Santeuil y tantos otros títulos memorables. Ay, si con eso bastara para aproximarse un poco a ellos … (Translation)
This columnist from Sevilla Actualidad (Spain) reminisces about his literature teacher.
Pilar Fernández me descubrió a Aleixandre y Gil de Biedma. Me abrió las puertas de una de las mejores novelas escritas en castellano, como es Tiempo de silencio, de Luis Martín Santos. Recuerdo como en aquellas clases descubría su fascinación por Jane Eyre o nos impresionaba con el impacto que supuso en su tiempo una novela como Nada, de Carmen Laforet. (Jaime Fernández-Mijares) (Translation)
El Mundo (Spain) has a travel article on Wales and it turns out that - as with many things - Charlotte Brontë was ahead of her time. The inn where she and her new husband Arthur Bell Nicholls stopped at on their way to Ireland during their honeymoon is now a must for foodies.
El segundo es el Castle Hotel, la antigua posada donde Charlotte Brontë pasó su luna de miel cuyo restaurante ofrece los mejores sabores galeses. (Marta González-Hontoria) (Translation)
The New York Times has an article 'In Praise of Derek Walcott’s Epic of the Americas'.
But I already had, not only into Atlantic history but also into Caribbean literature, and poetry from the Négritude movement to W. H. Auden and T. S. Eliot. Because of Walcott I read Jean Rhys’s “Wide Sargasso Sea” and Aimé Césaire’s “Notebook of a Return to the Native Land,” Alejo Carpentier’s “The Kingdom of This World” and Patrick Chamoiseau’s “Texaco.” I reread “The Tempest” and lyrics from two Bobs (Marley and Lowell), then landed back in the novels, and later the classroom, of Jamaica Kincaid. (Julian Lucas)
Wuthering Heights as one of several 'Literary One-Hit Wonders To Read At Least Once in Your Lifetime' on iDiva. Nick Holland writes about 'Anne and Emily Brontë And The Crow Hill Explosion' on AnneBrontë.org.

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