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ENGL 363: Modern and Contemporary Drama

This guide features information resources and search tips for students taking ENGL 363 in Fall 2019.

Assignment details

The assignment is here: Performance History Report and Presentation 10 points total (5 points for each half)

One of the ways in which studying drama is different from studying novels, poems, or other textually centered literary works is that we also can study performance as interpretation. (We will use our anthology’s essay “Reading Drama, Imagining Theater” as a starting point for vocabulary for discussing performance history.) Typical performance history notes might concern director’s choices and textual changes, casting, period setting, set design, and venue; generally we use contemporary reviews and interviews (often from periodicals like newspapers), and if available, we use scholarly performance analysis and theater company websites.

You will sign up to do a Performance History Report for one of the plays we’re studying (we’ll start with The Cherry Orchard); you will research at least two and preferably three productions, and, using your research, write a one-page Performance History Report giving background on the productions’ choices and analyzing performance points of interpretation. You will post this on Blackboard in the provided forum, and you will have 4 minutes to present it to the class orally as well.

                This portion of the course grade is graded. A rubric will be provided.


The plays which the research will cover:

Chekhov, The Cherry Orchard

Pirandello, Six Characters in Search of an Author

Lorca, House of Bernarda Alba

Brecht, Good Woman of Setzuan

Miller, Death of a Salesman

Beckett, Endgame

Albee, The Zoo Story

Shepard, Buried Child

Churchill, Cloud Nine

Kushner, Angels in America: Millennium Approaches

Parks, The America Play

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