re: Gender-fluid “Virginia Woolf”
Posted by: BruceinIthaca 04:57 am EST 02/07/24
In reply to: re: Gender-fluid “Virginia Woolf” - Guillaume 09:30 pm EST 02/06/24

I've always thought that, given Albee's lifelong denial of the assertion that George and Martha are "really" gay men could and his prohibition against playing them as such, I think the Madison production seems in the spirit of academic/scholarly experimentation. Having a male (as defined then) actor play Martha, but AS a female character seems like a chance to explore the complexities of gender. No one objected when Charlotte Cushman played Romeo (opposite her sister as Juliet!) or Judith Anderson Hamlet, but in those cases, the female actors retained the gender identity of the character as written. I recall, back in the late 70s, my ex-girlfriend was a student at Beloit (something out Wisconsin?) and the Women's Center did an all-female production of "Godot," and at the end Didi and Gogo said, "Shall we go?" "Yes, let," took each others hands and strode off. I'm sure Beckett would have shut it down. On the other hand, in my field (what used to be called "oral interpretation") we were encouraged to perform beyond our "body fact" (to use Wallace Bacon's term). The value for students of such work was invaluable.

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