Dramatic Reading (DR) Suggestions

Plays and other dramatic works
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ChuckW
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Post by ChuckW » May 30th, 2012, 11:04 pm

Some more drama suggestions:

Earth Spirit and Pandora's Box (Frank Wedekind) - Scandal, sensation, and raw sexuality... now in English! Truthfully, I really wanted to do this one myself but don't have the time to simultaneously work on two plays with overlapping casts. Maybe if I split responsibilities with someone? Who knows! But trust me, folks, these plays are excellent and really should be made part of the catalogue. They're so good, in fact, that there's a German production of this play going on as we speak. Just ask anyone working on that. They'll only confirm what I've already told you.

A Bill of Divorcement (Clemence Dane) - Madness and matrimony! The basis for the classic 1932 George Cukor film starring Katherine Hepburn and John Barrymore.

A Man's World (Rachel Crothers) - Feminist drama that takes on the sexual double standard. Frank Ware might be one of the most interesting female roles ever written.

EDIT: Completed
Earth Spirit
Pandora's Box
A Bill of Divorcement
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ChuckW
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Post by ChuckW » July 13th, 2012, 8:11 pm

While searching through Archive.org for one act plays, I stumbled upon a fascinating discovery--there is a startlingly large number of plays about Abraham Lincoln. Well, yes, I suppose this isn't all that surprising, considering how Lincoln remains the most revered and mythologized of American presidents. But still... it's worth mentioning on this thread.

Some of them were published after the 1922 deadline, but all of them seem to be in the public domain. I thought it would be worthwhile to share this surplus of Lincoln plays. I mean, come on. I can't think of too many male performers who wouldn't love to sink their teeth into the role of Abraham Lincoln! ;)

So, yes. For your consideration, here are the Lincoln plays:

Abraham Lincoln: A Drama (1919), by John Drinkwater

The Last Days of Lincoln (1959), by Mark Van Doren (public domain)

Lawyer Lincoln: A Comedy in One Act (1912), by Chase Webb and Betty Smith

The Day That Lincoln Died (1912), by Prescott Warren and William Hills Hutchins

Lincoln: A Story and a Play (1914), by Mary Hazelton Wade

The Washington Years (1947), by Nat Sherman (public domain)

President Lincoln (1940), by Earl Hobson Smith (public domain)

The Tragedy of Abraham Lincoln or, The Rise and Fall of the Confederate States (1881), by Hiram Torrie and Selden Whittaker (not for the faint of heart!)
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gloriana
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Post by gloriana » July 22nd, 2012, 8:15 pm

I realize the Dramatic Works forum is quite full right now, so I'm not proposing to start any of these immediately, but I wanted to let folks know that I would like to BC the following plays by Euripides at some point:

Hippolytus (trans. Gilbert Murray) Done - https://librivox.org/hippolytus-by-euripides/
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/8418
Fourteen roles: Aphrodite, Theseus, Phaedra, Hippolytus, Nurse, Henchman, Artemis, Old Huntsman, male and female Chorus, Narrator

Alcestis (trans. Gilbert Murray) Done - https://librivox.org/alcestis-by-euripides/
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/10523
Fourteen roles: Admetus, Alcestis, Pheres, Little Boy, Manservant, Handmaid, Heracles, Apollo, Thanatos, Chorus (male and female), Narrator

Electra by Euripides (trans. Gilbert Murray)
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/14322
Twelve roles: Clytemnestra, Electra, Orestes, Peasant, Old Man, Messenger, Castor, Chorus (female), Narrator

Iphigenia in Aulis (trans. Theodore Buckley) Done - https://librivox.org/iphigenia-in-aulis-by-euripides/
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/15081
Thirteen roles: Agamemnon, Old Man, Menelaus, Achilles, Messenger, Another Messenger, Iphigenia, Clytemnestra, Chorus (male), Narrator

Unfortunately the Gilbert Murray translations are not PD 70 - Murray died in 1957 - but his translations are the best on Gutenberg in my opinion. (The Buckley translation is PD for everyone, though.)

I'd be interested to hear if anyone is interested in one or more of these in particular, so please feel free to post and/or PM me. :)

wildemoose
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Post by wildemoose » July 23rd, 2012, 7:14 am

This is far in the future--I need at least one of my projects to wrap up first and most of them are in early stages--but I am planning, at some point, to do a dramatic reading of E.M. Forster's A Room with a View. I would be reading Lucy and narrating. If anyone has a favorite role in this that they'd like to claim, please PM me. I'll get in touch with you prior to the project being posted to make sure you're still up for it.

Done - https://librivox.org/a-room-with-a-view-dramatic-reading-by-e-m-forster/

musicalheart1
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Post by musicalheart1 » August 2nd, 2012, 1:05 am

Well, I'm not a huge fan of the English translation of Cyrano available on Gutenberg- it seems needlessly complicated for use as an audio drama script. For instance, there are many, many lines assigned to ensemble characters who are alternately addressed by different names or lines where it seems like multiple characters are supposed to say it, but it is never made clear who specifically. Example: There are lines assigned variously to "A troop of pages" (meaning more than one) and then to "A Page", later "Another" and then a different page character who is only referred to as "A Page." Obviously, this would require specifying a Page 1, Page 2, Page 3, etc. These sorts of oddities abound. Very minute, nit-picky things that would require some intense organizational skills and a lot of patience to sort through. Luckily, I have both but, as I said earlier, I wouldn't be able to try and coordinate it for a few months (and who knows if any of the MCs would wish to take this under their wing?- *hint hint*).

Question to the more experienced BCs- is it okay for me to tinker with the PD text of Cyrano? That is, reformat the play script into audio drama friendly Google Docs, making dialogue assignments and character designations as seen in the example above? This is the sort of thing I had to do in preparing the dramatic reading of Jane Eyre, but I wasn't sure if the rules were different for straight-up, honest to goodness real plays :?

gloriana
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Post by gloriana » August 5th, 2012, 5:36 pm

musicalheart1 wrote:Question to the more experienced BCs- is it okay for me to tinker with the PD text of Cyrano? That is, reformat the play script into audio drama friendly Google Docs, making dialogue assignments and character designations as seen in the example above? This is the sort of thing I had to do in preparing the dramatic reading of Jane Eyre, but I wasn't sure if the rules were different for straight-up, honest to goodness real plays :?
Hi Elizabeth - I've done this sort of thing on occasion for plays - for example, to format Chorus parts in Greek tragedies. You can see an example of a current one (for Hippolytus by Euripides) here:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/12TRqWT_xP2i7cUXD_C58SRgtxowyauhPDwSDWXSJHuE/edit

Basically all I've done is copy and paste the text into a Google doc and highlight the Chorus parts so that the four readers know when to read. If you're going to do something like this, I recommend being as minimally "invasive" with the text as possible. :)

ChuckW
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Post by ChuckW » August 9th, 2012, 12:57 pm

CaprishaPage wrote:This is still a long way off, but I am working on a dramatic reading of The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton. Narration, May, and Ellen are spoken for, but if you are interested in claiming a character, PM me. I imagine it will be closer to the end of the year before I will have all of the docs ready.
Oh, this sounds great, Caprisha! I've always thought we should do convert more classic American novels into dramatic projects. I'd actually considered doing F. Scott Fitzgerald's This Side of Paradise as a dramatic reading at one point... or perhaps Daisy Miller. But since that won't happen for a long time (if ever), I'd love to help out with this in any way that I can. Wharton is always fun!
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CaprishaPage
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Post by CaprishaPage » August 9th, 2012, 5:29 pm

ChuckW wrote:
CaprishaPage wrote:This is still a long way off, but I am working on a dramatic reading of The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton. Narration, May, and Ellen are spoken for, but if you are interested in claiming a character, PM me. I imagine it will be closer to the end of the year before I will have all of the docs ready.
Oh, this sounds great, Caprisha! I've always thought we should do convert more classic American novels into dramatic projects. I'd actually considered doing F. Scott Fitzgerald's This Side of Paradise as a dramatic reading at one point... or perhaps Daisy Miller. But since that won't happen for a long time (if ever), I'd love to help out with this in any way that I can. Wharton is always fun!
Consider yourself volunteered! :o)
Caprisha

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miss stav
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Post by miss stav » August 11th, 2012, 2:06 am

Hello all,
what do you think about a dramatic reading of Night And Day by Virginia Woolf? I thought that, if I want to bc a dramatic reading, it must be worth it. Night And Day is one of the only books which changed my personal life completely. Jo's reading of it is great, but I feel I should give this book something back for all it did for me. I decided that if I start a dramatic reading, I do two things:
1. Not sighn many roles in advance.
2. Ask no less than 5 people to help me with the eddeting in order that the work would not fall on one.
Does any of you like this book? Would you take a part in the reading? The etext can be found at:
http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/1245
Stav.
Love gothic novels? Try Children Of The Abbey. Like surprising mysteries? Try The Amathist Cross. Looking for an easy read? Try Harriet's Choice.

catrose
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Post by catrose » August 26th, 2012, 10:45 am

Just going to announce that I have a super-secret dramatic reading almost prepared! You might want to keep your eyes out for it in the Launch Pad in a few months or so :D
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wildemoose
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Post by wildemoose » August 28th, 2012, 10:58 am

This wouldn't be something I'd want to coordinate myself, but has anyone ever thought of doing a dramatic reading of The Pilgrim's Progress? It's mostly in dialogue anyway. I've always wanted to read it (mostly because the girls read it in Little Women) but have never quite gotten around to it.


In Progress - viewtopic.php?f=27&t=50878

CaprishaPage
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Post by CaprishaPage » August 28th, 2012, 4:14 pm

Oh, I think that would be lovely! Pilgrim's Progress is great. Plus, it is on the AP lit list, so there are practical uses, as well. I have students who choose to read it at least every 2-3 years. Count me in if someone gets around to it.
Caprisha

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Elizabby
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Post by Elizabby » August 28th, 2012, 4:44 pm

wildemoose wrote:This wouldn't be something I'd want to coordinate myself, but has anyone ever thought of doing a dramatic reading of The Pilgrim's Progress? It's mostly in dialogue anyway. I've always wanted to read it (mostly because the girls read it in Little Women) but have never quite gotten around to it.
That would be great! There are lots of little parts and really only two or three big ones, so it would be a good way to get lots of newbies involved. (If you haven't read it, it is about Christian's travels and as he journeys he meets lots of different people and challenges. So each chapter is fairly self-contained and characters only tend to occur once or twice.)

Also, the first time I read it I found it quite a challenge - I think this would be *great* for Librivox as it would make a classic more accessible to people. The punctuation alone I found very off-putting initially - with All the Important Nouns and some Verbs done in Capital Letters it just Feels very Old Fashioned and Tiring to Read.

What is involved with coordinating a book? I wouldn't mind trying my hand at it, and I don't mind keeping the MW up to date and tracking people's participation, but I'm not good with the technical end of editing/etc. I can barely manage my own files and noise reduction, so I don't think I could handle a big project like a dramatic reading.

ChuckW
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Post by ChuckW » September 27th, 2012, 4:14 pm

Not to contribute to the overabundance of dramatic projects going on right now, but I'm seriously thinking about following up The Film of Fear (and my two one act plays, which are almost finished!) with a dramatic reading of Henry James' Daisy Miller. Done - https://librivox.org/daisy-miller-dramatic-reading-by-henry-james/

It'll probably be a couple of months before I can start on it (still clearing up my backlog), but I thought I should go ahead and announce my intention of putting this one together in case any of you are interested. I'm actually re-reading this one right now and think it would work wonderfully as a dramatic reading; it's a relatively short book with a small number of characters, so it should also be a cinch to put together.

It can join The Age of Innocence in the short list of American novels converted into dramatic readings (I'd also considered doing Fitzgerald's This Side of Paradise, but haven't read that one in ages...)

Anyway, thought I should bring this up. Fingers crossed that we can start working on this one soon (again, still recording and editing other things, so it'll be a while).
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ChuckW
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Post by ChuckW » October 6th, 2012, 9:03 am

OK, so I'm at a bit of a crossroads here. I had originally intended to do a dramatic reading of Henry James' Daisy Miller as a follow-up to The Film of Fear (which is entering its final stages), but have now become somewhat taken with the idea of also doing Robert Louis Stevenson's The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde instead (or rather, first... since I intend to do both).

Both have their strengths and drawbacks. They're both relatively short (around 20,000 words) and have somewhat small casts. But Jekyll and Hyde has no real female roles to speak of and two chapters completely dominated by character narration; casting for this one might be more difficult. Daisy Miller has the opposite problem; the cast is almost entirely made up of female roles, with a smattering of strong male supporting roles. The titular role has also already been cast. However, this novella demands that I be very discerning about the accents of my volunteers. As the book details the cultural clash between American and European values, I'd only be able to accept volunteers with certain accents (and the American characters far outnumber the European ones).

Like I said, I want to do both... but there's no way I'm going to launch both simultaneously. Waaaay too busy for that. Either way, it'll be a while. I want to finish up some of my ongoing projects before starting up another one. But I thought I'd let the community weigh in, just in case there's a strong preference for one over the other (although I'd suggest "weighing in" via PM, since we don't want to clutter up this thread).
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