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Brecht and East Asian Theatre

The Proceedings of a Conference on Brecht in East Asian Theatre

Anthony Tatlow, Tak-wai Wong

Publication Year: 1982

This book contains unique information about Bertolt Brecht and East Asian theatre. It focuses in particular on China and offers first and detailed accounts of important Brecht productions from those directly involved.

Published by: Hong Kong University Press, HKU

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INTRODUCTION

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pp. 1-2

The papers gathered in this book were prepared in connection with the Hong Kong International Brecht Seminar held in the Goethe Institute and the University of Hong Kong from March 16-20th 1981. A list of speakers and translators at the end of this volume. The Seminar ...

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1. BERTOLT BRECHT TODAY PROBLEMS IN AESTHETICS AND POLITICS

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pp. 3-17

Introductions are best written afterwards. Who can anticipate what will happen in the next five days? Over the years there have been many large and smaller symposia on Brecht, and I have attended a few of them. But never before have so many experts from such varied backgrounds ...

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2. BRECHT IN CHINA

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pp. 18-27

Brecht once remarked that Gorky's tremendous impact on Russian and world literature could not be separated from his unique creative method (19.442). This remark also applies to Brecht. ...

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3. BRECHT'S THEATRE AND CHINESE DRAMA

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pp. 28-45

Brecht lived and wrote in the first half of the twentieth century, when society was undergoing dramatic changes. Scientific socialism was spreading and the contradictions of capitalism became increasingly acute. The founding of the first socialist country, the disasters ...

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4. THE RECEPTION OF BERTOLT BRECHT IN CHINA AND ITS IMPACT ON CHINESE DRAMA

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pp. 46-64

In 1935 Brecht saw Mei Lanfang's incomparable performance as a female impersonator of the Chinese Opera in Moscow. It was not only a milestone in the development of Brecht's career as a playwright and 'Dramaturg' (in the sense that the Peking Opera confirmed ...

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5. FIRST PERFORMANCE OF BRECHT'S DRAMATIC WORK IN CHINA: THE PRODUCTION OF MOTHER COURAGE AND ITS STAGE DESIGN

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pp. 65-71

In October, 1959 Bertolt Brecht's famous play Mother Courage and Her Children was performed in Shanghai: the first time this distinguished playwright's work was staged in China. Although Brecht's plays and his dramatic theories were not familiar to the Chinese people, this ...

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6. STAGE DESIGN FOR BRECHT'S LIFE OF GALILEO

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pp. 72-87

In March 1979, the Chinese Youth Art Theatre put on a public performance of Bertolt Brecht's Life of Galileo in Beijing; its stage design was quite an interesting artistic practice. To perform Brecht's plays on the stage of the modern Chinese theatre posed some intriguing problems. ...

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7. THE BEIJING PRODUCTION OF LIFE OF GALILEO

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pp. 88-95

I am delighted to have this opportunity to discuss with you various questions about Bertolt Brecht's drama and to share our knowledge and experience in the subject. The art of drama should serve as a powerful and effective means of communication and strengthen intellectual and cultural ...

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8. A SUPPLEMENT TO BRECHT'S' ALIENATION EFFECTS IN CHINESE ACTING'

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pp. 96-110

As we all know, Brecht wrote his essay on the Chinese classical theatre in 1935 after he had seen the performance of China's master performing artist - Peking opera actor Mei Lanfang. I was studying in England at the time, and his essay published in English inspired me with great...

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9. BRECHT RECEPTION IN JAPAN THE PERSPECTIVE OF THEATRICAL PRACTICE

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pp. 111-129

Brecht was known in Japan before the war. Drums in the Night was translated in 1930, The Flight of the Lindberghs a little while later. The Threepenny Opera was performed by the TES Ensemble in 1932, though the text was based on the film script because they could not get ...

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10. BRECHT IN OSAKA-KOBE AT THE BEGINNING OF THE EIGHTIES

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pp. 130-137

We now know a lot about Brecht. One might think that everything has been translated. Has he become for us the kind of classic that only academics want to discuss? Around 1936 Brecht wrote: 'The modern Epic Theatre also is inseparably linked to certain tendencies. It certainly ...

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11. BRECHT IN WEST BENGAL

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pp. 138-144

India, particularly West Bengal where we come from, needs Bertolt Brecht most. The reason is more political than literary. The West Bengal theatre, in contrast to the rest of India, is one hundred per cent political. West Bengal has a long tradition - a revolutionary heritage which ...

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12. PRODUCTION AS LEARNING EXPERIENCE TANIKO - HE WHO SAYS YES - THE MEASURES TAKEN

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pp. 145-161

One of the problems with Brecht is: twenty five years after his death, how do we keep his plays alive in the theatre? Do we adapt them to our changed world and our own political situation, and if so how far do we do this by staging, and how far by altering the text? The problems ...

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13. THE CAUCASIAN CHALK CIRCLE

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pp. 162-174

Brecht first used the chalk circle motif in 1925, though in a distorting and grotesque reversal, in the 'Interlude for the Foyer' The Elephant Calf. In that year Klabund's adaptation of The Chalk Circle by Li Xingdao was given its first performance in Berlin with Elisabeth ...

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14. HOW WE DIGESTEP BERTOLT BRECHT

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pp. 175-185

Before leaving Berlin, I rang up Klaus Volker and we spoke about our contributions to this seminar. When I told him that I intended to speak about new developments in the reception of Brecht in Germany, he asked me: 'Does it still exist?' And we laughed. Was this black humour? ...

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15. BRECHT IN ASIA : THE CHINESE CONTRIBUTION

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pp. 186-208

After returning to Beijing from Hong Kong I tried to establish what the Chinese participants had retained from the Seminar. It was after all the first time that artists and Germanists from the People's Republic had participated in a Brecht conference outside the People's Republic, even if ...

A GLOSSARY OF CHINESE NAMES, TITLES AND TERMS

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pp. 209-213

LIST OF SPEAKERS AND TRANSLATORS

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p. 214-214

INDEX

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pp. 215-227


E-ISBN-13: 9789882200449
Print-ISBN-13: 9789622090682

Page Count: 234
Publication Year: 1982

Research Areas

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Subject Headings

  • Brecht, Bertolt, 1898-1956 -- Knowledge -- China -- Congresses.
  • Brecht, Bertolt, 1898-1956 -- Stage history -- East Asia -- Congresses.
  • Brecht, Bertolt, 1898-1956 -- Dramatic production -- Congresses.
  • Brecht, Bertolt, 1898-1956 -- Influence -- Congresses.
  • Chinese drama -- History and criticism -- Congresses.
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