REVIEW
Levenson, Jill L. Shakespeare in Performance: Romeo and Juliet.
Manchester: Manchester UP, 1987.

Thesis: In her first chapter, "Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet: The Elizabethan Version," Levenson provides a preview of the general plan of her book:

In short, for three centuries Romeo and Juliet on the stage, and frequently on the page as well, has differed in tone and effect from the Elizabethan version. Before re-creating several decisive moments in the play's performance history -- the interpretations of David Garrick, Charlotte Cushman, John Gielgud, Peter Brook, and Franco Zeffirelli -- the following pages will briefly survey their mutual point of departure: the original Romeo and Juliet, its composition and production.    (2)
The general effect of the book is to emphasize the richness of Shakespeare's work, because all of the subsequent productions (except perhaps for Gielgud's) subtracted a great deal.

Snapshots:

Bottom Line: Balanced, informative.


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   Author: Philip Weller
   Last Modified: 2 April 2002