British Reception of Russian Playwright Aleksandr Nikolaevich Ostrovsky (1823-1886). Russian Drama on the British Stage

Author: Sealey Rahman, Kate
Year:2011
Pages:328
ISBN:0-7734-1459-2
978-0-7734-1459-4
Price:179.95
Explores the curious anonymity in the West of Russia’s foremost mid-nineteenth-century playwright, Aleksandr Nikolaevich Ostrovsky. It seeks explanations for this obscurity and, in turn, sheds further light on the wider relationship between Russian and English literature and the factors that affect the cross-cultural transfer
of literary works.

Reviews

“…tells the whole story of Ostrovsky’s relationship with Britain, including his fascination for Shakespeare, his role as a translator, his visit to London, the translation of his works into English, the special significance of major translators…” -Prof. A. D. P. Briggs, University of Birmingham

“…tells the whole story of Ostrovsky’s relationship with Britain, including his fascination for Shakespeare, his role as a translator, his visit to London, the translation of his works into English, the special significance of major Translators…” -Prof. A. D. P. Briggs, University of Birmingham

“Ostrovsky is significant for the British theatre because he helps us to understand more deeply what it is we love in those other Russian works, and why we love them.”-Prof. Robert Leach, Edinburgh University

Table of Contents

Foreword by Professor A.D.P. Briggs

Acknowledgements

List of Illustrations

Introduction

Part One: Ostrovsky and Britain
Chapter One: ‘The Inconvenience of Umbrellas’
Ostrovsky’s visit to London
Ostrovsky and Shakespeare
Ostrovsky as translator
The influence of British writers on Ostrovsky’s drama
Conclusion
Part Two: Britain and Ostrovsky
Chapter Two: First Sightings: 1868-1900
Early references
The influence of Sergei Stepniak: A reading of The Storm [Groza] (1894)
Stepniak and E.L. Boole: the first translations (1895)
Constance Garnett’s translation of The Storm (1899)
Conclusion
Chapter Three: Russians and Russophiles: The First Productions (1909-1929)
Lydia Yavorskaia: Vasilisa Melent’eva, His Majesty’s Theatre (1909)
Émigré productions (1919)
The Pax Robertson Salon: It’s a Family Affair (1922), Poverty is No Crime (1923)
The Moscow Art Theatre: Poverty is No Crime (1928)
Malcolm Morley: The Storm, The Everyman Theatre (1929)
Conclusion
Chapter Four: New Beginnings: 1930-1950
Early scholarship: Ina M. Beasley’s ‘The Dramatic Art of Ostrovsky’
Malcolm Morley: Bargains in Brides (1933)
J.Mc.Petrie: The King of Comedy (1937)
The Questors Theatre: It’s A Family Affair - We’ll Settle it Ourselves (1943)
Influential translations: D. Magarshack’s ‘Easy Money’ and other plays (1945) and R. Ackland’s Diary of a Scoundrel (1946)
Ostrovsky on radio and film
1 Productions outside London
Conclusion
Chapter Five: Dramatic and other guises: opera, ballet, musical theatre (1950-1965)
The first Scottish production: Diary of a Scoundrel, Citizens’ Theatre, Glasgow (1953)
Diary of a Scoundrel: amateur productions
Russian-language productions
Other guises
The Snow Maiden, London Festival Ballet (1961)
Musical Theatre: House of Cards (1963)
Ostrovsky and opera: Rimsky-Korsakov’s The Snow Maiden and Leoš Janá?ek’s Katya Kabanova
The Storm (1981) and A Family Affair (1993)
Conclusion
Chapter Six: Stormy Waters: The Storm at the Old Vic (1966)
Chapter Seven: Arrival: 1980s and 1990s
The RSC’s The Forest (1981)
Artists and Admirers, The Riverside Studios (1982) and Diary of a Scoundrel,
The Orange Tree Theatre (1985)
The Storm, RSC (July 1987)
New heights: A Family Affair, Donmar Warehouse and Too Clever by Half at The Old Vic, 1988
Artists and Admirers, The Pit (October 1992)
Wolves and Sheep: Sighing Furnace Theatre Company, Hen and Chickens Theatre, Islington (5-30 October 1993) and The Drama Centre, Chalk Farm (November 1994)
The Storm at The Almeida Theatre (November 1998) and The Forest at The National Theatre (January/February 1999)
Translations and Scholarship
Radio broadcasts
Conclusion: Swings and Roundabouts

Conclusion
Lack of translations
‘Russianness’
The Storm
The influence of Chekhov
Questions of fate?
Ostrovsky’s influence in Britain

Bibliography

Index of Ostrovsky Productions in Britain

Index of Proper Names and Titles