By David Barnett
David Barnett invitations readers, scholars and theatre-makers to find new methods of apprehending and applying Brecht during this transparent and available research of Brecht's theories and practices. The e-book analyses how Brecht's rules can come alive in practice session and function, and divulges simply how conscientiously Brecht discovered his imaginative and prescient of a politicized, interventionist theatre.
What emerges is a nuanced figuring out of Brecht's thoughts, his paintings with actors and his ways to directing. The reader is inspired to interact along with his technique which sought to 'make theatre politically', with a purpose to delight in the concepts he brought into his stagecraft. Barnett offers many examples of the way Brecht's principles may be staged, and the ultimate bankruptcy takes a better examine very diversified performs: one written by way of Brecht and one through a playwright without stated connection to Brecht. via an interrogation of The Resistible upward thrust of Arturo Ui and Patrick Marber's Closer, Barnett asks how a Brechtian strategy can liven up and light up production.
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Additional info for Brecht in Practice: Theatre, Theory and Performance
As a result, the organization of the action is also affected. The old model, taken from the Greeks, of an organically developing plot gives way to episodic action: interconnected acts are replaced by free-standing scenes. The lack of plotted connections between the scenes allows them to show different aspects of a character in order to call the very idea of a unified self into doubt. Thus, at the end of one scene, Mother Courage curses the war for the misery it has brought. Yet at the beginning of the very next one, she is singing its praises because her business is doing well again.
Representation itself can never be neutral: it is always supporting one interest or another. Brecht maintains, ‘without opinions and intentions one cannot represent anything’ (Organon §55). This is an important observation because it links representing characters and actions with agendas. It asks directors and actors to be conscious, thinking artists. If one does not have an opinion or an objective when representing a character or an action, one could be merely be reproducing the opinions and objectives of someone with a different agenda altogether.
Revealing the Radical Theorist 27 Defining ‘the Brechtian’ Dramas tend to focus their attention on characters, their desires, their struggles, their triumphs and their defeats. We may think of Antigone, Hamlet, Chekhov’s three sisters or Miller’s doomed salesman. We may see aspects of ourselves in these figures from the past and thus believe that human beings have not changed that much over time. Brecht, on the contrary, asks us to focus on situations and on how situations inform, affect and transform characters.
Brecht in Practice: Theatre, Theory and Performance by David Barnett