Critics have praised either "Hamlet" or "King Lear" as the greatest of Shakespeare's "mature" tragendies. Ernst Honigmann, in the most significant edition of the play for a generation, asks: why not "Othello"? This edition sheds new light on the text of the play as we have come to know it, and on our knowledge of its early history.Critics have praised either "Hamlet" or "King Lear" as the greatest of Shakespeare's "mature" tragendies. Ernst Honigmann, in the most significant edition of the play for a generation, asks: why not "Othello"? This edition sheds new light on the text of the play as we have come to know it, and on our knowledge of its early history.Read Less
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Publishers Weekly, 2008-09-29 Shakespeare's legendary tragedy is revisited in this spirited and entertaining production that ran in London from November 2007 to February 2008. The flawless, talented cast features Ewan McGregor as the conniving Iago, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Othello (whose performance won him the Olivier Award as best actor) and Kelly Reilly as Desdemona. There is also excellent support from Tom Hiddleston (as Cassio) and Michelle Fairley (as Emilia). This audio production is a rousing, theatrical performance expertly guided by director Michael Grandage. Complete with a musical score as well as full sound effects and background noises, listening is so enjoyable that the play speeds by at breakneck pace. An enclosed booklet contains color photographs of the production and a well-written essay by drama professor Russell Jackson. There's also an entertaining bonus DVD disc featuring interviews with the cast and crew. Brilliantly produced in all departments, listening is the next best thing to seeing it live. (July) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Publishers Weekly, 1995-03-20 More than a retelling, this aptly termed "reconceptualization" provocatively modernizes Shakespeare's play. As in the original, the middle-aged general Othello the ``moor'' and young European noblewoman Desdemona fall in love and marry secretly. But Lester (To Be a Slave; John Henry) transplants the action from Venice and Cyprus to Elizabethan England and turns Iago and Emily into Africans like Othello, so that the three of them share a distinctly non-European point of view. Iago's envy of Othello and ability to whip him into a jealous rage at Desdemona are thus cast in a new light, though the tragic outcome remains the same. While the ending feels abrupt, Lester's novel succeeds in holding up a mirror to contemporary society. Phrases and passages directly based on Shakespeare's language are printed in a different typeface, a device that may distract the reader but eases comparisons with the original work. Ages 8-12. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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