The Complete Dramatic Works of Tang Xianzu
A contemporary of Shakespeare, Tang Xianzu (1550–1616) is considered China’s greatest playwright, whose lyrical works mark the literary high point of the Ming dynasty. This collection of five major pieces in English translation features The Purple Flute, The Purple Hairpins, The Nanke Dream and The Handan Dream, together with his most celebrated work, The Peony Pavilion, which has 55 scenes and a performance time of 18 hours: ‘in world drama there is no more extensive and beautiful exploration of love’.
Alan Bennett’s play is set in the old-style local hospital of a small northern town. As staff struggle to find beds on the Dusty Springfield Geriatric Ward and the hospital faces closure in an NHS efficiency drive, a documentary film crew arrives to record its fight for survival. With an introduction by Bennett.
Medea and Other Plays
Four tragedies are presented in this modern prose translation – the relatively light Alcestis contrasting with the darker human passions of Medea, The Children of Heracles and Hippolytus. A general introduction and individual prefaces to each play provide context and analysis. (Previously published as Alcestis and Other Plays.)
Shakespeare’s tragedy of betrayal and jealousy remains one of his most performed plays. This Olivier Award-winning Donmar production stars Chiwetel Ejiofor as the doomed war hero, Ewan McGregor as the manipulative Iago, Kelly Reilly as Desdemona, Michelle Fairley as Bianca, and Tom Hiddleston as Cassio.
Great Speeches and Soliloquies
Shakespeare’s words are ingrained in our language, culture and everyday lives. This collection includes his most memorable speeches, from Hamlet to Henry V, from Julius Caesar to The Tempest, performed by RSC stars Simon Russell Beale, Estelle Kohler, Clifford Rose and Sarah Woodward.
Great Historical Shakespeare Recordings
This collection brings to life the greatest Shakespearian performances of the 19th and 20th centuries, from Irving’s Richard III and Terry’s Ophelia to Gielgud’s Romeo and Olivier’s Henry V. The second disc’s miscellany includes Edith Evans as Lady Bracknell and a dialogue by Laurel and Hardy.
The Poems & Plays of Oliver St John Gogarty
Satirized as ‘stately Buck Mulligan’ in James Joyce’s Ulysses, Oliver St John Gogarty (1878–1957) was a leading figure in the Irish literary Renaissance, whose elegant lyric verse was greatly admired by his friend WB Yeats. This complete edition brings together his 15 volumes of poetry, together with more than 200 unpublished poems and the three plays he wrote for Dublin’s Abbey Theatre, allowing modern readers to appreciate the full range of his lively, evocative writing.
A Play in Three Acts by Sean O'Casey
Set in 1913, a year of industrial turmoil in Ireland, O’Casey’s play focuses on the workers’ strikes and riots as they converged on a Dublin church busy with its harvest festival preparations. Written around 1918–19, but never performed, this is O’Casey’s earliest extant play, published for the first time in this 1979 edition, with an introduction by John O’Riordan. Slightly off-mint.
Classical Monologues: Women
Volume Four: From the Restoration to Bernard Shaw
This essential tool for actors, directors, teachers and students of classical drama includes more than 120 riveting monologues for women from the Restoration to the 20th century, including Aphra Behn’s Cornelia, Dryden’s Cleopatra, Schiller’s Mary Stuart, Oscar Wilde’s Lady Windermere and Bernard Shaw’s Eliza Doolittle and Saint Joan. A detailed introduction to each monologue provides an informative and critical context for theatre professionals and general readers alike.