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When a Script is Not a Script
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Stratford Festival Composite Script Collection


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Figure 1. 

William Hutt as Prospero, The Tempest, 2005, Stratford Festival, directed by Richard Monette.

Photo by David Hou, courtesy of the Stratford Festival Archives


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Figure 2. 

Founding Stratford Stage Manager John Hayes (1920-1993).

Photo by Peter Smith, courtesy of the Stratford Festival Archives

With this issue on Theatre Archives, Jenn Stephenson and I considered many options for the “script” section. There was the tried and true path, trying to find a short Canadian play in which archives featured prominently. We could have gone that route, but as we tossed around ideas with the carefree abandon of those presented with a clean slate, we jointly became tempted to try something different. Rather than a play featuring archives, we considered choosing a play whose many drafts have been archived and publishing excerpts from early through later versions as a sort of “show and tell” (really more “showing” than “telling”). We also talked about asking individual theatre practitioners (actors, designers, administrators, playwrights, etc.) whose papers have been archived to write a couple of paragraphs about the reasons they chose to donate papers to archives and how they felt about their experience with the whole process. All of these alternatives would have made compelling additions to the issue, and—as also often happens when presented with a plethora of options—we found it difficult to choose.

But we had to commit to one—and quickly!—and since we had already read through the proposed articles being considered for inclusion, we saw a great opportunity in Toby Malone’s paper to highlight the script as archival object while at the same time drawing attention to the role of a theatre practitioner-turned-archivist in creating an archival record. Malone’s examination of the Stratford Festival’s prompt-book and “composite-book” collection reveals how an active company has valued its past enough to invest in understanding how past productions were conceived and uses that knowledge to inform future productions. The stage nourishes the archives, and the archives nourishes the stage.

Copyright © 2013 University of Toronto Press
Project MUSE® - View Citation
Kathryn Harvey. "When a Script is Not a Script." Canadian Theatre Review 156.156 (2013): 64-65. Project MUSE. Web. 4 Mar. 2014. <http://muse.jhu.edu/>.
Harvey, K.(2013). When a Script is Not a Script. Canadian Theatre Review 156(156), 64-65. University of Toronto Press. Retrieved March 4, 2014, from Project MUSE database.
Kathryn Harvey. "When a Script is Not a Script." Canadian Theatre Review 156, no. 156 (2013): 64-65. http://muse.jhu.edu/ (accessed March 4, 2014).
TY - JOUR
T1 - When a Script is Not a Script
A1 - Kathryn Harvey
JF - Canadian Theatre Review
VL - 156
IS - 156
SP - 64
EP - 65
PY - 2013
PB - University of Toronto Press
SN - 1920-941X
UR - http://muse.jhu.edu/journals/canadian_theatre_review/v156/156.harvey.html
N1 - Volume 156, Fall 2013
ER -

...


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