Antony and Cleopatra: the wrap-up

Happy Halloween, Bardophiles!

So. Here we are. At the end of our time-share somewhere between Rome and Alexandria. At the end of three–count ‘em! Three!–months with that slap-and-tickle couple, Antony and Cleopatra.

And I’m happy to be hitting the road and heading to … well, more on that in a minute.

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Podcast 138: Antony and Cleopatra: Concept, cast, and conclusion



This week’s podcast concludes our three month-long discussion of Antony and Cleopatra with a production concept and cast, then a wrap-up of the play.

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Antony and Cleopatra: Verse, scansion, and character

With every play, I like to take a look at some of the verse variations within a play to see what we can find in terms of characterization or performance. There are two scenes of note in Antony and Cleopatra, that give us an opportunity to compare and contrast.

So let’s dive in…

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Midpoint–enter Octavia then pivot

Using Professor Rodes’ midpoint theory, let’s take a look at Antony and Cleopatra.

There are 3039 lines in in the play, which means the midpoint is at line 1520, or at Act Three, Scene Six, line 37. According to Dr. Rodes’ theory, you could find at this midpoint–or within twenty lines either way–a speech that perfectly sums up a major theme of the play (the 20-line leeway was to help remove the differences in prose line lengths between individual editions).

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Antony and Cleopatra: stage directions in dialogue

With every play, I like to take a look at the stage direction that are hidden in the dialogue. Shakespeare’s (in)famous for a dearth of explicit stage directions, forcing the enterprising actor/director to plumb the dialogue lines in search of some helpful nuggets. And thus my occasional sojourns into script studies. Antony and Cleopatra is no different.

Only it is.

Lemme ‘splain…

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Ain’t talkin’ ‘bout love

So. We’re in the home stretch for Antony and Cleopatra. And just what is this thing? It’s certainly not a history (there’s too much of a huge chunk of the actual chronology missing–despite what I said Saturday). And as we discussed before, the concept of the tragic hero/ine/s here is sketchy at best.

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Shakespearean Cosplay

I’ve talked a little (well, maybe not a little) about the concept of performances and acting in Antony and Cleopatra. Our titular couple seems to act any role but that of themselves, so much so that I question who they really are.

There’s another angle to this performance relationship, however…

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Antony and Cleopatra’s history, man (again)

OK, so some scattered thoughts for this Saturday morning, re: Antony and Cleopatra, history, theater, and–believe it or not–Alexander Hamilton…

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Who am I playing, again?

Yesterday, I noted the many times in Antony and Cleopatra that we see a motif of performance and acting. There were quite a few.

Today, I’ve got no major revelations–just some questions…

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