Twelfth Night: Performance interpretations

Whos production was a ‘landmark production’ and why? Barton 1969: it wasn’t comic, it instead explored the psychological complexity of the characters. One critic described it as having a wintery melancholy.Characters of comedy are exiled into reality- ‘holiday’ is payed for in ways that have real life consequences.
What approach to Barton take? (and other melancholic versions of the play) A Chekhovian approach (mood of introspection and frustration)
Barton 1969: Characterisation and staging (Olivia and Orsino) Orsino: -Orsino is introduced listening to his musicians and behind the music the aural disturbance of the sea becomes louder and louder.-His longing for love is overlaid by the storm of violas arrival. She will awaken him from romantic delusion. -Howling gale outside Orsinos court; reality at odds with romanticism Viola:-She is a catalyst; a storm of honest emotion and the sound the waves shows this, with them playing again in her a2 s4 conversation with Orsino and when reuniting with Seb
Barton 1969: Characterisation of Maria and Malvolio Maria: Not fun but a prim scottish house keeper who is besotted with sir toby and only fooling with Malvolio to lure Toby into marriage.Malvolio: Agent of so much fear becomes the most wounded of all- broken under the weight of humiliation and stumbles off stage after handing olivia his chain of office
Barton 1969 Quotes ‘Viola acts as a catalyst”Wintery melancholy’
Whos production focused on the inherent melancholy resulting from the pain of love? Caird 1983
How does Zoe Wanamaker describe playing Viola in Cairds production? (ghosts and catalyst) She highlights the impact of thoughts about mortality: the deep fear that her brother had come back as a ghost to haunt her, the spirit trifling with her feelings of loss and griefHowever she also says she is the catalyst who brings life chaos and hope, stirring others up and forcing them into a spiral
Cairds use of setting Sense of decay and confinement, ruined garden, rusting gates and a chapel Thunder rumbled in the background throughout and only achieved downpour cued by Festes song at the end
Caird 1983 Key Quote Sense of decay and confinement
Which director took an extreme approach to comedy as a reaction to the 20th century preoccupation with the plays melancholy? Noble 1997
How did Noble use setting? -Comic and non realistic feeling to setting and costumes-Brash, bold cartoon like primary colours- like a childs play box -Pop art playground with a lurid green carpet for the box tree
How were Nobles characters perceived? -He lost the poetry of their language -There was no depth, only exaggerated grottoes caricatures
Noble: Main critical quotes ‘Pop art alice in illyira”Crude one dimensional farce’ ‘Pantomime’
Ket features of 2017 National Theatre Production -Focus on gender fluidity (Female Malvolio, Fabian, Feste) -Highlights use of music and ‘chaos’ -spinning wave piece in the middle of the set and music playing between scenes -Gender politics between Malvolio and Maria; between two women, Marias revenge appeared petty -Highlights homosexual elements; Orsino and Cesrio, Sebastian and Antonio both kissing and setting in a gay nightclub
What is significant about the end of the National Theatre production? Malvolio stuggules to climb to the top of the steps. She is disheveled, everyone else is beneath her getting married and joyous. These is a ver definite sense of isolation as in the spotlight she holds he hands up almost like the figure of christ on the cross. She becomes the scapegoat for the sins of other characters, like christ was for humanity.
Key Features of 2017 Royal Exchange production -Large structure in the middle that encapsulates Malvolio; representing the ‘whirligig of time’ that ‘brings his revenges’ (Remeninsnet of a shipwreck)-Modern ideas about mental health (OCD) Malvolio with his reliance on hand gel -Engagement of the audience; they feel part of the festivities with the electric guitar and dancing -Gender ambiguity; transgender Feste (also possibly mention the anger sang in the last song)-Towering Olivia over Viola -Sand always on stage; malleability and changeability of characters
Key features of 1996 Trevor Nunn film version -Key focus is on Feste: he becomes the withdrawn other, he is the liminal figure -He sees through the disguise of Olivias melancholy, and understands who Cerisa really is when he sees Viola wash up on the beach -Feste is referenced to as ‘Feste” not ‘fool’ as in the original text when Malvolio is calling for help. Suggests he is more than a comedic plotline and a fool.-Heighted hostility between Malvio and Feste when we first see them- the stare -A2 S4 Between Viola and Orsino: masculine pursuits of playing cards and smoking (highlighting how Viola is allowed to get to know Orsino as a man)- but this is over when they lean in to kiss-Malvolio as an obvious hypocrite; reading French porongraphic magazine Amore-Vicotrian setting; gender differences defined
Key features of 2013 Globe production -Harking back to Elizabethan times with an all male cast; profound, effecting the erotisic interplay between characters-Not a young, beautiful woman playing Olivia but an older male. Exerts power through wit and intelligence not looks -Staging for comedic value; e.g. Malvolio dropping the apple and Olivia attempting to break up fighting