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Your Favourite Plays

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One of the plays we have in common, kelby-lake, is An Inspector Calls. A production of it a few years ago really held me.

 

My taste in plays is rather varied and often depends on the production I've seen (rather than read). Anyway - off the top of my head -

 

Henry IV, Parts I & II

King Lear

Twelfth Night

A Midsummer Night's Dream

Measure for Measure

Bedroom Farce - Alan Ayckbourn

Tamburlaine - Christopher Marlowe

History Boys - Alan Bennett

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My taste in plays is rather varied and often depends on the production I've seen (rather than read).

 

You're absolutely right, this is so important, chuntzy. I'd never sit down and read a play by choice, so for me it is all about the performance.

 

Here's my choice of plays I've seen fine productions of over the years:

 

Shakespeare: Hamlet, King Lear, Twelfth Night

Arthur Miller: Death of a Salesman, The Crucible

Sam Shepard: Buried Child

David Mamet: Glengarry Glen Ross, Speed-the-Plow

Harold Pinter: The Birthday Party

Edward Albee: Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Samuel Beckett: Happy Days

David Eldridge: Festen

Oscar Wilde: The Importance of Being Earnest

Terry Johnson: Insignificance

Edmond Rostand: Cyrano de Bergerac

 

Although it is a musical of sorts, special mention for Shock Headed Peter, probably the most extraordinary stage creation I've ever seen.

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One of the plays we have in common, kelby-lake, is An Inspector Calls. A production of it a few years ago really held me.

 

My dad played Gerald in an amateur production when I was quite young. I like to watch a production and then read the play so I can see how well it's being done. Some plays are actually really readable- like novels but in a different format.

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Glengarry Glenross or anything by Mamet

Since it's in a different area you may not have seen the BGO group discussion of that here. Feel free to chip in your own thoughts!

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Oh wow, this is a tough call! But here's a sampling:

Shakespeare: The Tempest, As You Like It, King Lear, Hamlet, Henry V, "The Scottish Play" (I'm not in the theatre building right now, so guess I can say it: Macbeth)

Marlowe: Doctor Faustus

Middleton: The Revenger's Tragedy

Sheridan: The School for Scandal

Strindberg: Miss Julie

Miller: Death of A Saleman

Williams: A Streetcar Named Desire

Stoppard: Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead, The Real Inspector Hound

MacDonald: Goodnight Desdemona, Good Morning Juliet

Shaffer: Royal Hunt of the Sun

Fornes: Fefu and Her Friends

Fry: The Lady's Not for Burning

Synge: Riders to the Sea, Playboy of the Western World

Shue: The Foreigner

I'm with Grammath on Cyrano and Earnest. Buried Child is powerful enough to be canonical, and I'd love to see a production of it (of Shepard, only seen Fool for Love and was quite impressed). My list has also included, at various times depending on where the studies took me, High Tor, Antigone, The Madwoman of Chaillot, Cloud Nine, Terra Nova and Arden of Faversham. Among others...

 

I like Ibsen too, but would like him better if I could find some translations that weren't so stilted and ponderous. Any suggestions? (Reading him in Norwegian is right out, sorry.)

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Both the Sophocles and the Anouilh, though I've only seen the latter on stage in a decent college production. I'd love to see some bona fide Greek tragedy in a bona fide Greek amphitheatre!

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Wow I can't believe no one has mentioned by own two favourite Playwrights yet!

 

I love reading and watching plays but Brian Friel and Tennessee Williams are just magical for me.

 

My favourite Friel play is Aristocrats ....for anyone who hasnt read this, and likes Friel I would recommend this play so much, its just a very touching and poignant story, which also captures beautifully a changing Ireland, and Casimir is one of my favourite characters ever!.

 

My favourite Williams play has to be a tie between A Streetcar Named Desire and The Glass Menagerie - both just fantastic.

 

The four and five of my top five would be: The Field by John B Keane, and The Playboy of the Western World by JM Synge.

 

The only one I haven't the pleasure to see live is The Field and I would love to some day! :D

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Quite a lot of GBS, whose plays I read at a very young age but which seem to be performed rarely these days:

Pygmalion (saw it performed in 2007)

Arms And The Man

The Apple Cart

Major Barbara

Androcles And The Lion

 

Dodie Smith - best known currently for I Capture The Castle:

Dear Octopus, which used to be her most well known play

Call It A Day, in which I had my first AmDram acting rôle

 

Ariel Dorfman:

Death And The Maiden, which I have read and heard performed on the radio, but have not seen

 

Lee Hall:

Spoonface Steinberg, another which I have heard and read.

 

I'll have to have a think about favourite plays I have seen performed, as memories of my main theatre-going days require a little assistance from my collection of ancient programmes.

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My favourite play that I have seen is 'Up 'n Under' by John Godber. Funny and surprising. The film of it really doesn't do it justice.

 

Mind you, I don't generally enjoy going to the theatre. I find it very difficult to suspend my disbelief.

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Don't know why I haven't contributed to this thread.

 

A Streetcar Named Desire is probably my favourite play, closely followed by The Crucible. I have taught both several times, and they always go down well, and somehow my own enjoyment is enhanced rather than diminished by teaching them.

Similarly, I always enjoy teaching Romeo and Juliet. The Merchant of Venice and Othello are also Shakespeare favourites.

I like Ibsen - I saw Ghosts a while back, and I enjoyed it, but I prefer Hedda Gabler and A Doll's House.

I did a lot of German drama at uni, and I liked Ibsen's contemporaries, all the naturalist and realist stuff. As I remember it, there was a lot of turn of the century stuff with a real social conscience, like The Weavers by Gerhard Hauptmann, about the Luddite Rebellion. I've forgotten a lot of that stuff, but I really enjoyed it at the time.

I'll have a think and may return.

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Am getting more and more into theatre - think it's my favourite "art" at the moment!

 

Favourite plays ever seen:

 

Shaffer - Amadeus, Royal Hunt for the Sun, Equus

GBS - Saint Joan

Anouilh - The Lark, Antigone

Shakespeare - Hamlet (David Tennant and Roger Rees), Henry V, Midsummer Night's Dream, Othello, Twelfth Night, Measure for Measure (did it for A level and LOVED it)

Medoff - Children of a Lesser God (first play I saw in the West End aged about 14 - will stay with me forever)

Edward Albee - Three Tall Women - Think this might be the best piece of theatre I have ever seen - Maggie Smith and Frances De La Tour were beyond fantastic.

 

Good times!

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Measure for Measure (did it for A level and LOVED it)
I think that's my favourite Shakespeare play, I'd love to see it performed. Lucky you!

 

Children of a Lesser God (first play I saw in the West End aged about 14 - will stay with me forever)

I didn't realise there was a play of this, I saw the William Hurt film when I was much younger and loved it.

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I didn't realise there was a play of this, I saw the William Hurt film when I was much younger and loved it.

 

It was in 1981 (just looked it up) and had Trevor Eve in the main role - he won an award for it. I still remember how powerful it was.

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Here I go-

The Death of a Salesman (A. Miller)

A Doll's House (Ibsen)

Dr. Faustus ( Marlowe)

Hamlet (Shakespeare)

The Glass Menagerie ( T. Williams)

The Hairy Ape (Eugene O' Neill)

Arms and The Man (G B Shaw)

Waiting for Godot (Samuel Beckett)

An Ideal Husband (Wilde)

Romeo and Juliet (S.)

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