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Topic Summary

Posted by: 06011106
« on: October 26, 2008, 11:43:11 PM »

I'm writing my Uni Dissertation on Sarah Kane, and looking at the role of cruelty in her work. Cruelty can be used to change, and is therefore a useful device in politically / socially orientated theatre that attempts to make a point or conveys a message about the state of the world. I'm examining whether the tactics and use of cruelty in Kane's work did indeed provoke a change, or whether it only served to alienate the audience. I believe the latter is true, particularly with the voices of critics at the time were so vocal in their disapproval. Kane's work is so provoking and a seminal part of the Brisish theatre movement, I want to know how we can make it more accessible to a wider audience. I'm investigating the role of the theatre space, when Blasted was first performed, the theatre space was small, and I believe this makes the experience more visceral, more affronting, as the action is closer to you, and unescapable. The subsequent performances have varied in staging techniques and spaces, and one in particular used Brechtian approaches, reading the stage directions, with little physical action. Does this alienation technique ensure the messages of the plays are more promient, or does the lack of violence detract from the essence of Kane's work? Is there a middle ground?

Your thoughts would very very welcome!