The audience & the playwright : how to get the most out of live theatre /

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Bibliographic Details
Author / Creator:Simon, Mayo.
Imprint:New York : Applause Theatre & Cinema Books ; Milwaukee, WI : Sales & distribution, North America, Hal Leonard, c2003.
Description:221 p. ; 22 cm.
Subject:Theater audiences.
Theater audiences -- Psychology.
Drama -- History and criticism.
Theater audiences.
Theater audiences -- Psychology.
Criticism, interpretation, etc.
Format: Print Book
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Hidden Bibliographic Details
Varying Form of Title:Audience and the playwright
Notes:Includes index.
Review by Choice Review

Simon's odd but engaging book offers a brisk course in drama appreciation from the playwright's perspective. A dramatist himself, Simon takes on the role of guide, illuminating unique elements of numerous significant plays in brief, concisely written vignettes. From Aeschylus's Persians to Tony Kushner's Angels in America, Simon makes a persuasive case for the importance of the playwright's contributions--plot, scene, language, and mood--in giving the audience an omniscience that enhances the bond between the live performer and the spectator. The audience for this book is not entirely evident--it should prove especially useful to inexperienced readers in introductory theater courses, but above that level it may seem a bit glib. Simon's tone is lighthearted and conspiratorial but often a bit condescending. Despite this, his love of plays and stage artifice has an exhilarating and infectious quality. The range of mostly canonical plays Simon elects to analyze is impressive, though the brief analyses do not run deep--an understandable flaw given that Simon is attempting to provide illumination of 2,500 years of the theater in a mere 215 pages. The seasoned theatergoer or practitioner will surely demand a more sophisticated analysis than Simon aims for in this book. ^BSumming Up: Recommended. High school and lower-division undergraduate collections. J. Fisher Wabash College

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
Review by Choice Review