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  • Print publication year: 2005
  • Online publication date: September 2009

4 - Rehearsal


The transcription, and its accompanying commentary, went off to Sid Charlton, the general manager at the Globe, on 14 May. In fact, I sent two. The complete text ran to over eighty pages, and I figured that no actor would want to see all of it. So I sent one complete copy to Sid, for circulation to Tim Carroll and Tom Cornford, and reworked the transcript on a character-by-character basis for the actors, printing out all Romeo's lines in one text, all Juliet's in another, and so on. Some of the actors were doubling up roles, so I was also able to group their parts together. Elizabethan cue-scripts, evidently, worked on the same principle.

I thought the actors would appreciate this approach (as indeed they did). Romeo would be able to concentrate on his part without being bothered by anyone else's. And the same with the others. Apart from convenience, I thought it might actually cut down on the risk of interference. Recall that the transcriptions were not all the same (p. 72). If Romeo, getting to grips with his transcription, saw that the Friar had a transcription which differed from his, it might have been confusing. But, apart from that, these part-transcripts had an unexpected benefit for me. Seeing all the lines of a particular character together enabled me to spot a few inconsistencies I hadn't noticed before.

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Pronouncing Shakespeare
  • Online ISBN: 9780511487019
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