Theatre

Savages

Andrew Fuhrmann
Monday, 26 August 2013

‘If men are masters of their fate,’ asks the American feminist Susan Faludi, ‘what do they do about the unspoken sense that they are being mastered, in the marketplace and at home, by forces that seem to be sweeping away the soil beneath their feet?’

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The Maids

James Waites
Thursday, 27 June 2013

Jean Genet’s Les bonnes (The Maids, 1947) is inspired by a true story. Two maids, sisters, murder their wealthy mistress and are found by authorities soon after, huddled in the same bed. Incest as well? So it is odd to be confronted with a drama that essentially addresses the audience’s intellect, spring-boarding out of a melodramatic re-enac ...

The Rape of Lucrece

Peter Rose
Tuesday, 05 February 2013

There is at least one bravura performance in Melbourne right now, and it warranted a much larger house than we saw last week (February 1), when Southbank Theatre was only half full. The Royal Shakespeare Company’s production of William Shakespeare’s long poem The Rape of Lucrece was first seen in Australia during the recent Sydney Festival, but it was pre ...

Wild Surmise

Andrew Fuhrmann
Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Was there ever an Australian poet who drank so deep of that turbid spring, enthousiasmos, Aristotelian enthusiasm, as Dorothy Porter? From the grungy vitality of her early collections, to the exuberant embrace of popular genre fiction in her five verse novels, to the high, passionate tone of her lyrics, libretti, and later collections, she was never less than ...

On the Misconception of Oedipus

Andrew Fuhrmann
Tuesday, 25 September 2012

How is it that the sordid ‘familial romance’ of Laius, Jocasta, and Oedipus, or ‘daddy, mommy, and me’, came so completely to define the concept of desire in the modern West? For Deleuze and Guattari, authors of The Anti-Oedipus, that is the true sphinxian riddle at the heart of the Oedipus materials, the myth, and its subsequent interpretations from ...

Alice Kessler-Harris: A Difficult Woman

Desley Deacon
Tuesday, 10 July 2012

Desley Deacon

 

A Difficult Woman: The Challenging Life and Times of Lillian Hellman
by Alice Kessler-Harris
Bloomsbury, $39.99 hb, 439 pp, 9781596913639

 

Why, Alice Kessler-Harris’s friends kept asking her, are you writing a biography of Lillian Hellman – a ...

'Patrick White in Adelaide' by David Marr

David Marr
Tuesday, 24 April 2012

By the time I found him twenty-five years ago in the Adelaide Hills, Glen McBride was old, tiny, spry, and ready to boast about his career. I doubt many readers have heard of this little man or know of his pivotal role in the literature of this country. That’s what had me knocking at his door. And though he disowned none of it in the hours we spent ranging over hi ...

Summer of the Seventeenth Doll

John Rickard
Monday, 27 February 2012

I first saw Summer of the Seventeenth Doll in 1957 in London, of all places. I remember feeling some pride in seeing the symbolic kewpie doll presiding over the New Theatre in the heart of the West End. June Jago’s performance as Olive has stayed with me over the years; Philip Hope-Wallace, the Guardian reviewer, described her as ‘all chin and ...

The fifty-seventh summer of Ray Lawler’s great play

John Rickard
Wednesday, 01 February 2012

‘This harsh, cawing, strongly felt play’

by John Rickard

 

 

I first saw Summer of the Seventeenth Doll in 1957 in London, of all places. I remember feeling some pride in seeing the symbolic kewpie doll presiding over the New Theatre in the heart of the West End. June Jago’s performance as Olive has stayed ...

A definitive biography of Shakespeare’s great rival

Lisa Gorton
Monday, 23 January 2012

‘O Rare Ben Jonson’

Lisa Gorton

 

Ben Jonson: A Life
by Ian Donaldson
Oxford University Press, $48.95 hb, 552 pp, 9780198129769

 

Ambitious, arrogant, talented, brave, learned, truculent, and convivial: Ben Jonson was too outstanding, too odd, and ...

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