• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Dear Mr Simon I am writing in reply to your advertisement for an actor to play the character of King Lear in your upcoming production.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Dear Mr Simon I am writing in reply to your advertisement for an actor to play the character of King Lear in your upcoming production. I have much acting experience and have appeared in many theatre and film performances over the last 40 years. I have previous experience in King Lear, as I starred as King Lear at the New York 'Shakespeare in the park' festival. This production required extreme emotional elements, which I believe I executed with sincerity. My "experienced" appearance closely adheres to Lear's in the play. My 72 years have not yet affected my acting ability, and I must say, it has permitted me to retain the stamina of a younger man. I have thought about what it is you want to see in your production of King Lear. I greatly admire Paul Schofield's performance in the Brook production of King Lear 1962. His portrayal of Lear was angry and unheroic. The audience had no sympathy for Lear in his rage. He was perceived as shamefully boorish when expressing his anger by up-turning tables and implements, and through this performance his madness in Act 3 was deserved. ...read more.

Middle

I believe that the more contrast provided, the greater impact the production will have on an audience. I have the capability to perform as such. Performance criticism of King Lear is the semiotics of theatre and how they are manipulated to give different meaning. The expression of phrases, costumes and gestures all contribute to the main idea shown through the play. The many productions of King Lear I have studied, in pursuit to become an actor mature enough in ability and age to play Lear successfully, have given me an open mind to the capabilities of the play. Lear's power transforms throughout the play. In Act 1 Lear is strong. When we see Cordelia challenge that power, "I cannot heave/my heart into my mouth." (1:1:91) all sense of absolute power is taken from him. In Act 3, Lear orders the storm, an uncontrollable force of nature, to destroy the Earth, the delusions of power become apparent. Throughout the play, Lear transforms from a responsible adult to some kind of childishness with the storm scene being the pivotal point between the two, allowing Lear to gain greater knowledge of himself and of the world around him. ...read more.

Conclusion

This criticism is one that shows the belief that political power, historical and social forces are the cause of tragedy. In 1965, Jan Kott, a Polish critic challenged earlier criticism and argued that history is the cause of tragedy, more so than fate or the gods. The Brook production of King Lear in 1962 was greatly influenced by Kott's argument that "All bonds...are broken. Social order...will crumble into dust." Cruelty is dominating, and redemption or affirmation is hopeless. "I am a man more sinned against than sinning." (3:2:58) "As flies to wanton boys are we to th'e gods;/they kill us for their sport." (Glouster 4:1:37) Charles Lamb, an early 19th century critic, said King Lear is "beyond all art", and I must agree, as King Lear is one of the most valued of all Shakespeare's plays, and has been read and received in many different cultural and historical contexts. Although Lamb was not correct in saying that "Lear is essentially impossible to be represented on a stage." I strongly believe, as an actor, that with the director's clear instruction as to the ideas he or she wish to make visible to the audience, King Lear is the most playable of all plays, and will continue to be replayed, and re-valued for centuries to come. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE King Lear section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE King Lear essays

  1. 'Explore the ways in which Shakespeare Creates sympathy for Lear in the play 'King ...

    For example when Edgar slips out of his role of Poor Tom when he is so overcome by pity for Lear and what he has been reduced to, this sympathy felt by Edgar is so prominent that it encourages the audience to instantly feel sympathy for Lear also.

  2. King Lear - Lear Exclaims in Act 3 That He is "More Sinned Against ...

    He compares man's need to the needs of the beast. This introspection is short lived and he soon lapses into self-pity. "A poor old man/As full of grief as age, wretched as both" (2/4/265) He still has a long way to go to redeem his sins.

  1. How does the character of King Lear Change throughout the play 'King Lear'

    Once inside the farmhouse Lear becomes vengeful in his attitude towards his daughters, and begins to devise punishments for them. This shows he is unforgiving, but our sympathies still lie with him because we can see that he is not in his right mind as he rails.

  2. 'I am a man more sinned against than sinning' III.2.59-60 To what extent do ...

    The following will explore this opinion further. Lear evokes our sympathy when he shows his better qualities In Act 2. His hiring of Caius shows that Lear inspires loyalty, and his interaction with the Fool shows a softer, more tolerant side to his nature. We also admire, to an extent his determination to remain calm when he

  1. I am a man more sinned against than sinning King Lear was written ...

    Therefore be gone, Without our grace, our love, our benison.' Lear then commits his final sin of the scene telling the court that he does not love the Cordellia anymore. Lear not only commits a personal sin against her by disowning her but also a political sin in creating a natural enemy in France.

  2. Discuss Shakespeare's treatment of madness in "King Lear".

    (Act 3 Scene 4, Lear) Lear becomes a more humble man and with his new kindness the audience feels some sympathy for him. In madness, Lear becomes obsessive. The 'filal ingratitude' of Goneril and Regan is Lear's greatest obsession. Lear is so obsessed with his daughters' betrayal of their father he believes ungrateful daughters have also betrayed Poor Tom.

  1. King lear

    The egg could represent Lear mind, the contents of the egg emptied could mean that Lear has lost his mind, and the two fragile crowns are that he has left represent a broken. Or the egg could represent Lear's power being the yolk being emptied and is left with nothing, Reflects social chaos as well in another theory.

  2. An Analysis of the Role of Comedy in Shakespeares Great Tragedy King Lear

    The audience would also be mindful of the sub plot?s purpose and recognise that this scene is a vehicle by which to convey Lear?s extreme mental torture as well as to illustrate the impact of Lear?s original decision on his whole kingdom.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work