For Jeff Lewonczyk, co-artistic director of the Brick Theater in Brooklyn, whose Pretentious Festival this month leans to the arch and self-referential (sample title: “Every Play Ever Written: A Distillation of the Essence of Theater”), there was at least one playwright he wanted to avoid.Notice how I insult my fellow Shakespeare productions, and then pull back by allowing them to be mentioned in the space that should rightfully be MINE? This is called Machiavellianism, friends, and I advise you all to study it. Also observe the playwright's death mask in the photo above. He is dead, and will remain so indefinitely.
“I’m sick to death of Shakespeare,” Mr. Lewonczyk said in an interview on Wednesday. “I’m sick of seeing other productions, and I’m sick of having him held up as the sole bar for quality.” (He had also been deterred by taking on “The Tempest” at a premature age, he added.)
But all it took was seeing a good “Comedy of Errors” for Shakespeare to infiltrate his creative thoughts, and soon Mr. Lewonczyk was directing a mute Macbeth and programming two other adaptations for his festival: “Ian W. Hill’s ‘Hamlet’ ” and “Q1: The Bad Hamlet,” based on the error-ridden first quarto of the play, reviled by most scholars.
Friday, June 8, 2007
EXPOSURE (CCC): THE NEW YORK TIMES
After an increasingly embarrassing spiral of wheedling, cajoling, and outright begging, I finally consented to grace the Times with an interview - but only on condition that it revolve around my own production of Macbeth Without Words. I was quoted in the company of such tyros as Jack O'Brien and Bartlett Sher, among others. Do you think what I said had the good manners to be uncontentious? Naive! Below is the excerpt featuring my musings; read the full article HERE and the accompanying data HERE.