The Maids and Deathwatch

The two plays collected in this volume represent Genet’s first attempts to analyze the mores of a bourgeois society he had previously been content simply to vilify.

Author: Jean Genet

Publisher: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.

ISBN: 9780802194305

Category: Drama

Page: 168

View: 358

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The two plays collected in this volume represent Genet’s first attempts to analyze the mores of a bourgeois society he had previously been content simply to vilify. In The Maids, two domestic workers, deeply resentful of their inferior social position, try to revenge themselves against society by destroying their employer. When their attempt to betray their mistress’s lover to the police fails and they are in danger of being found out, they dream of murdering Madame, little aware of the true power behind their darkest fantasy. In Deathwatch, two convicts try to impress a third, who is on the verge of achieving legendary status in criminal circles. But neither realizes the lengths to which they will go to gain respect or that, in the end, nothing they can do—including murder—will get them what they are searching for.

Deathwatch

" The French text of "Deathwatch," published by Gallimard, was extensively altered by Genet during rehearsal; and Bernard Frechtman's translation is of the final 'performance' version, which supersedes the original published text.

Author: Jean Genet

Publisher:

ISBN: 057125151X

Category: French drama

Page: 40

View: 816

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Deathwatch, Jean Genet's earliest play, was first performed in Paris in 1949. Short and intensely powerful, it is an excellent introduction to his later dramatic work - The Maids, The Balcony and The Blacks. The French text, published by Gallimard, was extensively altered by Genet in the course of rehearsal; and Bernard Frechtman's translation is of the final acting version, which supersedes the original published text.

Maids

"The Maids" ("Les Bonnes," here translated by Bernard Frechtman) is Jean Genet's most oft-revived work for the stage.

Author: Jean Genet

Publisher:

ISBN: 0571251145

Category: French drama

Page: 44

View: 206

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The Maids (Les Bonnes, here translated by Bernard Frechtman) is Jean Genet's most oft-revived work for the stage. First performed in Paris in 1947, its action was inspired by a real-life scandal, the murder by two maids, sisters Christine and Léa Papin, of their mistress and her daughter. Genet's maids - Solange and Claire - occupy themselves, whenever their Madame is out of doors, by acting out ritualised fantasies of revenging their downtrodden status. But when the game goes beyond their control the maids are compelled to try to make their fantasy a reality. 'The most extraordinary example of the whirligigs of being and appearance, of the imaginary and the real, is to be found in [Genet's] The Maids. It is the element of fake, of sham, of artificiality, that attracts Genet in the theatre.' Jean-Paul Sartre

Jean Genet

Introduction This chapter discusses The Maids and Deathwatch in production across six decades, demonstrating the wide variety of theatrical approaches and styles that Genet's early texts inspire.1 To understand why Genet's early plays ...

Author: David Bradby

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 9781134188277

Category: Performing Arts

Page: 192

View: 938

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This book is the only introductory text to Genet in English, offering an overview of this key figure in defining and understanding twentieth-century theatre. The authors provide a comprehensive account of Genet's key plays and productions, his early life and his writing for and beyond the theatre.