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House Lights: Richard Maxwell's Early Plays

House Lights: Richard Maxwell's Early Plays HOUSE LIGHTS Richard Maxwell’s Early Plays Sally Oswald BOOK REVIEWED: Richard Maxwell, Plays: 1996–2000. New York: Theatre Communications Group, 2004. eading the texts bare, unmarked by Maxwell’s distinctive direction, is to experience a kind of essential Maxwell. Before the ironic stylings of heavy-metal or pop tunes, fast food uniforms, or anything else, there are the titles, names, and words. There are the kids, parents, workers, bar-flies, and low-life entrepreneurs. There are the ramblings, ellipses, and supposed accusations of people stumbling though life, presented as if we in turn have stumbled upon them. As Maxwell, quoted in too many articles to cite, would like us to remember, “the reality is that we’re watching a play.” Yet, in this case, the reality is that we’re reading his plays, though without the benefit of an introduction or any stage directions. How to stage Richard Maxwell in your mind without knowing his specific approach to acting (stripping it away) and staging (static) or music (hand-held tape players)? We are to understand that these are, simply, Richard Maxwell’s plays. R Giving over to the reality of reading yields the rare opportunity to trace the development of one of today’s most influential writers. What http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art MIT Press

House Lights: Richard Maxwell's Early Plays

PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art , Volume 28 (1) – Jan 1, 2006

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Publisher
MIT Press
Copyright
© 2005 Sally Oswald
Subject
Books & Company
ISSN
1520-281X
eISSN
1537-9477
DOI
10.1162/152028106775329615
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

HOUSE LIGHTS Richard Maxwell’s Early Plays Sally Oswald BOOK REVIEWED: Richard Maxwell, Plays: 1996–2000. New York: Theatre Communications Group, 2004. eading the texts bare, unmarked by Maxwell’s distinctive direction, is to experience a kind of essential Maxwell. Before the ironic stylings of heavy-metal or pop tunes, fast food uniforms, or anything else, there are the titles, names, and words. There are the kids, parents, workers, bar-flies, and low-life entrepreneurs. There are the ramblings, ellipses, and supposed accusations of people stumbling though life, presented as if we in turn have stumbled upon them. As Maxwell, quoted in too many articles to cite, would like us to remember, “the reality is that we’re watching a play.” Yet, in this case, the reality is that we’re reading his plays, though without the benefit of an introduction or any stage directions. How to stage Richard Maxwell in your mind without knowing his specific approach to acting (stripping it away) and staging (static) or music (hand-held tape players)? We are to understand that these are, simply, Richard Maxwell’s plays. R Giving over to the reality of reading yields the rare opportunity to trace the development of one of today’s most influential writers. What

Journal

PAJ: A Journal of Performance and ArtMIT Press

Published: Jan 1, 2006

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