Friday, March 14, 2014

Special Issue on Global Shakespeares, reviews of Al-Bassam and Achour plays

Shakespeare (The British Shakespeare Association) Volume 9, Issue 3, September 2013
Special Issue on Global Shakespeares, edited by Alexander Huang
Video clips that accompany the articles are available on:
If interested in reading an article from the issue please contact Alex Huang (

Alexander C. Y. Huang
pages 273-290
Having reached a critical mass of participants, performances and the study of Shakespeare in different cultural contexts are changing how we think about globalization. The idea of global Shakespeares has caught on because of site-specific imaginations involving early modern and modern Globe theatres that aspired to perform the globe. Seeing global Shakespeares as a methodology rather than as appendages of colonialism, as political rhetorics, or as centerpieces in a display of exotic cultures situates us in a postnational space that is defined by fluid cultural locations rather than by nation-states. This framework helps us confront archival silences in the record of globalization, understand the spectral quality of citations of Shakespeare and mobile artworks, and reframe the debate about cultural exchange. Global Shakespeares as a field registers the shifting locus of anxiety between cultural particularity and universality. The special issue explores the promise and perils of political articulations of cultural difference and suggests new approaches to performances in marginalized or polyglot spaces.

Peter S. Donaldson
pages 291-303
Kinga Földváry
pages 304-312
Giselle Rampaul
pages 313-321
Juan F. Cerdá
pages 322-329
Nely Keinänen
pages 330-338
Anna S. Camati & Liana C. Leão
pages 339-341

Lucian Ghita
pages 342-346
Jyotsna Singh
pages 347-349
Margaret Litvin
pages 350-352
Carla Della Gatta
pages 353-355
Georgi Niagolov
pages 356-358
Jeffrey Butcher
pages 362-364
Review of Shakespeare's Othello (directed by Nikos Charalambous for the Cyprus Theatre Organization) at Latsia Municipal Theatre, Nicosia, Cyprus, 27 November 2010
Eleni Pilla
pages 365-366

Haylie Brooke Swenson
pages 367-372

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Merchant of Venice in Yemen

Thanks to Dr. Katherine Hennessey, we have a video clip and a lot of analysis of a March 2013 Yemeni Merchant of Venice adaptation up at the Global Shakespeares site.

For more on the production, and on the history of Shakespearean adaptations in Yemen, see her article: “Shylock in the Hadhramaut?  Adaptations of Shakespeare on the Yemeni Stage” by Katherine Hennessey, Arablit 3:5, June 2013.

How cool is this?  Thanks, Katherine!

Staged reading of Al-Bassam's Al-Hamlet Summit in NYC

Hey NYC folks! Go see the staged reading of The Al-Hamlet Summit at NYU-Gallatin, 
and/or this discussion at Columbia,
then write in (to the comments section below) and tell me what you thought.
You can find out what I thought (a few years ago) here.

Here's the NYU info:

Mar 10, 2014 | 6:30 PM-8:30 PM

A staged reading of Sulayman Al-Bassam's powerful and provocative play followed by a panel discussion.
About the Play:
A startling piece of new writing that borrows from Shakespeare’s plot to create a poetic and powerful critique of contemporary political scenarios, set in the cauldron of Middle East discontent. The familiar characters of Shakespeare’s play are delegates in a conference room in an unnamed modern Arab state on the brink of war. Having gained control of a modern Arab state, a ruthless dictator attempts a westernized experiment, in thrall to arms dealers and propped up by US dollars. Yet a catastrophic war is brewing, he is besieged by enemy neighbors from without, and a growing politicized Islam from within, and his predecessor’s son Hamlet is plotting revenge...
Cast List:
Hamlet – Hadi Tabbal*
Ophelia - Beth Pollack
Gertrude - Lameece Issaq*
Claudius - Ramsey Faragallah*
Polonius - Alok Tewari*
Laertes - Amir Darvish*
Arms Dealer - David Letwin*
U.N. Messenger - Katherine Romans
Fortinbras - Alec Seymour
Stage Directions - Kelsey Burns
Security - Charles Kennedy & Alec Seymour
Stage Manager - Laura Skolnik*
*Members of AEA
Date + Time Mar 10, 2014 | 6:30 PM-8:30 PM
Location Jerry H. Labowitz Theatre for the Performing Arts