George Bernard Shaw’s ST JOAN, in a production directed by Josie Rourke at the Donmar, is the latest play in the NT Live screenings.
I had mixed feelings about Rourke’s production. Gemma Arterton as St Joan is superb, and the idea of updating the play to now with computers, mobile phones and rolling screens of financial statistics was intriguing but didn’t feel like it worked that well.
The dialogues was beautifully spoken it could perhaps be a terrific radio play version. The play is abridged, but much attention is paid to the complicated, convoluted text of Shaw’s play. Continue reading NT LIVE’S OVERLY AMBITIOUS ST JOAN @ THE DONMAR
George Bernard Shaw’s 1903 MAN AND SUPERMAN with more than 57,000 words, is an epic romantic comedy of manners, a witty social satire and presents a range of very profound philosophical arguments and other existential topics and theories.
Full of contradictions, the play is a comedy about ideas – most of the characters passionately discuss and debate a range of subjects including politics, capitalism, socialism, social reform, male/female roles in courtship. It definitely has a certain Wildean appeal, with a multitude of clever witticisms, about music and the morals of the English upper classes, whilst questioning the integrity of English politicians.
When first published it was pronounced as being unstageable, because its verbosity made it unwieldy. The play asks fundamental questions about how we live, during its four acts lasting nearly four hours, and all the messages conveyed remain still very relevant today, and in its genre this play remains forever a provocative theatre landmark.
Continue reading BERNARD SHAW – NT Live: MAN AND SUPERMAN