The Quality of Mercy by Peter Brook
Reflections on Shakespeare

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Peter Brook, widely considered to be the most influential director in theater, has written a slender book of only 110 pages about Shakespeare. "The Quality of Mercy," though, contains within its scintillating reflections the essence of all that he has learned over a lifetime.
-WSJ online

Synopsis

In The Quality of Mercy, one of the world's most revered theatre directors reflects on a fascinating variety of Shakespearean topics.



In this sequence of essays - all but one published here for the first time - Peter Brook debates such questions as who was the man who wrote Shakespeare's plays, why Shakespeare is never out of date, and how actors should approach Shakespeare's verse. He also revisits some of the plays which he has directed with notable brilliance, such as King Lear, Titus Andronicus and, of course, A Midsummer Night's Dream.



Taken as a whole, this short but immensely wise book offers an illuminating and provocative insight into a great director's relationship with our greatest playwright.



'This book is an invaluable gift from the greatest Shakespeare director of our time... Brook's genius, modesty and brilliance shine through on every page.' James Shapiro, author of 1599: A Year in the Life of William Shakespeare

 

About Peter Brook

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Peter Brook is one of the world’s best-known theatre directors. Outstanding in a career full of remarkable achievements are his productions of Titus Andronicus (1955) with Laurence Olivier, King Lear (1962) with Paul Scofield, and The Marat/Sade (1964) and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (1970), both for the Royal Shakespeare Company. Since moving to Paris and establishing the Centre International de Créations Théâtrales at the Bouffes du Nord, he has produced a series of events which push at the boundaries of theatre, such as The Conference of Birds (1976), The Ik (1975), The Mahabharata (1985) and The Tragedy of Hamlet (2000). His films include Lord of the Flies (1963), King Lear (1970) and The Mahabharata (1989). His books, especially The Empty Space (1968), have been hugely influential.
 
Published April 23, 2013 by Nick Hern Books. 130 pages
Genres: Humor & Entertainment, Arts & Photography, Literature & Fiction. Non-fiction
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WSJ online

Above average
Reviewed by JOHN HEILPERN on Oct 04 2013

Peter Brook, widely considered to be the most influential director in theater, has written a slender book of only 110 pages about Shakespeare. "The Quality of Mercy," though, contains within its scintillating reflections the essence of all that he has learned over a lifetime.

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