Reading, Reading, Reading

I have been on a mission to read a ton, because....why the hell not, right?

So as a super-keener as I seem to be, rather than just reading the weekly assigned pages, I read all of Great Reckonings In Little Rooms: On The Phenomenology Of Theatre by Bert O. States. This is an interesting book. On the whole, I think it is useful, if only to give the audience and performer new ways of thinking about the theatrical experience, why we go, and what it does to us. I must say that some of the assertions had me a little uneasy...such as the one alluded to in a previous blog that when we see an actor, we also see all their previous roles peering out from inside this current performance, so Hamlet is Henry IV is Iago (for example). But other assertions and ideas got me thinking, and certainly made me want to read more.

Some ideas/phrases that got me thinking:
...altered our perception of reality. (p4)
...something of the realism of a sucession of dream images; it is an imagined actual experience that floats wherever the text leads. (p28)
...The actor is that unique creature who passes through a whole life in a few hours and in doing so carries the spectator vicariously with him. (p49)
...We know that human dramas do not unfold in one or two rooms. But when a play seduces us into believing that they do - that is, when the smoothness in the flow of events overtakes the artifice of the form - we have the spatial counterpart of the radical improbability that Fate performs in the temporal action. Space is Destiny, the visual proof that order lurks in human affairs. (p69)
...Once you have trapped your protagonist in one of these real rooms, leaving him (or her) in the posture of Munch's creature in The Cry, you take away the room - which is no longer real enough - and reconstruct it as the visible extension of his ravaged state of mind. (p84) almost atomic release of stylistic energy. (p86)
...In one way or another, the history of theatre can be viewed as a history of flirtation with the psychical distance between stage and audience. Styles are reborn in new conventional disguise and certain styles serve certain purposes better than others. (p96)
...what makes it so wrenching is that it contains no emotional reference to its own emotion. But the fact that it doesn't serve up our emotions for us does not mean that it isn't producing them. (p105)
...There is something about the imitation of another human being, about speaking in another's voice, that requires either a creatural naivete, a touch of madness, or an invited audience. (p158)
...we might think of the curtain call as a decompression chamber halfway between the depths of art and the think air of reality. (p198)

More reading...coming soon!
Tynan on Theatre - Kenneth Tynan
An Anatomy of Drama - Martin Esslin
Drama from Ibsen to Eliot - Raymond Williams
Birth of Tragedy - Frederich Nietzsche