Sir Trevor Nunn is one of the most versatile and accomplished directors in the English-speaking theatre. This book examines his achievements as a director of Shakespeare within the wider context of debates on the cultural politics of Britain's theatrical institutions in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. His approach has been marked by the combination of close textual analysis with inventive theatricality, in performance spaces ranging from the large stages of the Royal Shakespeare Company and the National Theatre to the intimacy of the companies' studio theatres. The principal focus of the book is on Nunn's work as director of Shakespeare during his artistic directorship of the RSC and the NT. The four core chapters focus in detail on major productions that can be said to have challenged and changed perceptions of the plays, including The Winter's Tale (RSC, 1969), the 'Roman Plays' season (RSC, 1972) and All's Well That Ends Well (RSC, 1982), and the studio productions of Macbeth (RSC 1976), Othello (RSC, 1989) and The Merchant of Venice (NT, 1999). The study draws on archive material, as well as reviews and other published commentary, including that of actors who have worked with him.
About the Author
Russell Jackson is Emeritus Professor of Drama at the University of Birmingham, UK. His work focuses on the relationships between text and performance - particularly but not exclusively of Shakespeare's plays - in their social and intellectual context and in a wide range of media. He is currently engaged in studies of the representation of the theatre in the other arts.
Table of Contents
List of Illustrations
A Note on the Text
Introduction: 'controlled flamboyance' and Leavisite analysis
1: The Main Stage at Stratford, 1968-72
2: The Main Stage at Stratford – after the 'Romans'
3: Chamber Shakespeare at the Other Place
4: The National Theatre and beyond
Appendix: Shakespeare Productions directed by Trevor Nunn at the RSC and the National Theatre