Why the Theatre : In Personal Essays, College Teachers, Actors, Directors, and Playwrights Tell Why the Theatre Is So Vital to Them book cover
1st Edition

Why the Theatre
In Personal Essays, College Teachers, Actors, Directors, and Playwrights Tell Why the Theatre Is So Vital to Them

Edited By

Sidney Homan

ISBN 9780367861957
Published December 14, 2020 by Routledge
220 Pages 10 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Why the Theatre is a collection of 26 personal essays by college teachers, actors, directors, and playwrights about the magnetic pull of the theatre and its changing place in society.

The book is divided into four parts, examining the creative role of the audience, the life of the actor, director, and playwright in performance, ways the theatre moves beyond the playhouse and into the real world, and theories and thoughts on what the theatre can do when given form onstage. Based on concrete, highly personal examples, experiences, and memories, this collection offers unique perspectives on the meaning of the theatre and the beauty of weaving the world of the play into the fabric of our lives.

Covering a range of practices and plays, from the Greeks to Japanese Butoh theatre, from Shakespeare to modern experiments, this book is written by and for the theatre instructor and theatre appreciation student.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Why?

Sidney Homan

Part 1: The Creative Role of the Audience 

1. Vouchsafe Me Audience

Nick Hutchison 

2. Training the Eye 

S. P. Cerasano 

3. Undeveloped Freight: Listening Together in the Playhouse 

Robert Price 

4. A Shakespeare Professor Becomes a Playgoer 

Alan C. Dessen 

5. Acting the Storm: Twenty Years of Tempests 

June Schlueter 

6. From Theatre to Classroom: Making Teaching Effective 

Fred Kiefer 

Part II: The Life of the Actor, Director, and Playwright in Performance 

7. Why the Theatre? Breaking of the Fourth Wall

Gary Lagden 

8. Play, Devising, and the Creative Process 

Brian Rhinehart 

9. I Am Thrilled by an Impure Theatre 

Sidney Homan 

10. In the Nick: Theatre in and of Our Times 

Jerry Harp 

11. "The Play" May Not Be "The Thing"—But Something Is

Erica Terpening-Romeo 

12. Why Butoh Theatre: Thoughts of the Actor, Questions From the Director 

Yokko ( Yoshiko Sienkiewicz ) and Brian Rhinehart

13. Amateur Hour, or Notes From a Hack Playwright 

Paul Menzer 

Part III: When the Theatre Moves Beyond the Stage Into the Real World 

14. Theatre for Health 

Joanna Howarth 

15. Why Make Theatre in the South Pacific? A Personal View of Theatre in Aotearoa/New Zealand 

David O’Donnell 

16. Empathy Is Essential 

Kristin Kundert  

17. The Art of Failure

Katherine McGerr 

18. Why Teach Theatre? 

Gina MacKenzie 

19. Making Theatre Around the World, and What It Has Taught Me 

Avra Sidiroupoulou 

Part IV: Theories and Thoughts About What the Theatre Can Do When Given Form Onstage 

20. The Cruelty Tourist and the Emancipated Spectator: Looking for an Essential Theatre 

Ralf Remshardt 

21. Theatre and the Digital Native 

Donna Soto-Morettini 

22. Remembering Dreams 

Fran Teague 

23. Theatrical Pleasure and Lynn Nottage’s Intimate Apparel 

Joseph Candido 

24. Yeat's "Lapis Lazuli" as Theatrum Mundi 

Daniel T. O’Hara 

25. Why (Not) Theatre? Stage, Screen, and Streaming in a Pandemic 

Patrick Hart 

26. Because 

Cary M. Mazer 

Epilogue: "Yeh, Boss"

Sidney Homan

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Sidney Homan is Professor of English at the University of Florida and a member of the Academy of Distinguished Teaching Scholars. An actor and director in professional and university theatres, he is the author or editor of 18 books on Shakespeare and the modern playwrights.