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ДОУНБ • Просмотр темы - American playwright Tennessee Williams - 100
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26 мар 2011, 13:57

 American playwright Tennessee Williams - 100
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Thomas Lanier Williams was born on March 26, 1911 in Columbus, Mississippi. The second of three children, his family life was full of tension. His parents, a shoe salesman and the daughter of a minister, often engaged in violent arguments that frightened his sister Rose.
In 1927, Williams got his first taste of literary fame when he took third place in a national essay contest sponsored by The Smart Set magazine. In 1929, he was admitted to the University of Missouri where he saw a production of Henrik Ibsen's Ghosts and decided to become a playwright. But his degree was interrupted when his father forced him to withdraw from college and work at the International Shoe Company. There he worked with a young man named Stanley Kowalski who would later resurface as a character in A Streetcar Named Desire.
Eventually, Tom returned to school. In 1937, he had two of his plays (Candles to the Sun and The Fugitive Kind) produced by Mummers of St. Louis, and in 1938, he graduated from the University of Iowa. After failing to find work in Chicago, he moved to New Orleans and changed his name from "Tom" to "Tennessee" which was the state of his father's birth.
In 1939, the young playwright received a $1,000 Rockefeller Grant, and a year later, Battle of Angels was produced in Boston. In 1944, what many consider to be his best play, The Glass Menagerie, had a very successful run in Chicago and a year later burst its way onto Broadway. The play tells the story of Tom, his disabled sister, Laura, and their controlling mother Amanda who tries to make a match between Laura and the gentleman caller. Many people believe that Tennessee used his own familial relationships as inspiration for the play. His own mother, who is often compared to the controlling Amanda, allowed doctors to perform a frontal lobotomy on Tennessee's sister Rose, an event that greatly disturbed Williams who cared for Rose throughout much of her adult life. Elia Kazan (who directed many of Williams' greatests successes) said of Tennessee: "Everything in his life is in his plays, and everything in his plays is in his life." The Glass Menagerie won the New York Drama Critics' Circle Award for best play of the season.
Williams followed up his first major critical success with several other Broadway hits including such plays as A Streetcar Named Desire, Summer and Smoke, A Rose Tattoo, and Camino Real. He received his first Pulitzer Prize in 1948 for A Streetcar Named Desire, and reached an even larger world-wide audience in 1950 and 1951 when The Glass Menagerie and A Streetcar Named Desire were made into major motion pictures. Later plays which were also made into motion pictures include Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (for which he earned a second Pulitzer Prize in 1955), Orpheus Descending, and Night of the Iguana.
Tennessee Williams met and fell in love with Frank Merlo in 1947 while living in New Orleans. Merlo, a second generation Sicilian American who had served in the U.S. Navy in World War II, was a steadying influence in Williams' chaotic life. But in 1961, Merlo died of Lung Cancer and the playwright went into a deep depression that lasted for ten years. In fact, Williams struggled with depression throughout most of his life and lived with the constant fear that he would go insane as did his sister Rose. For much of this period, he battled addictions to prescription drugs and alcohol.
On February 24, 1983, Tennessee Williams choked to death on a bottle cap at his New York City residence at the Hotel Elysee. He is buried in St. Louis, Missouri. In addition to twenty-five full length plays, Williams produced dozens of short plays and screenplays, two novels, a novella, sixty short stories, over one-hundred poems and an autobiography. Among his many awards, he won two Pulitzer Prizes and four New York Drama Critics' Circle Awards.

Links:
http://travel.nytimes.com/2011/03/13/tr ... liams.html
http://www.acorn-online.com/joomla15/ea ... thday.html
http://www.who2.com/tennesseewilliams.html
http://www.answers.com/topic/tennessee- ... e-williams
http://www.imagi-nation.com/moonstruck/clsc9.htm
http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle ... s_national
http://www.notable-quotes.com/w/williams_tennessee.html
Tennessee Williams - a biography - http://www.imagi-nation.com/moonstruck/clsc9.htm
Tennessee Williams Trivia - a trivia quiz on the American playwright. - http://www.usefultrivia.com/literary_tr ... index.html
A Streetcar Named Desire - a synopsis of the play - http://www.theatrehistory.com/american/ ... e_001.html


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26 мар 2011, 13:58

 TENNESSEE WILLIAMS QUOTES
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At the age of fourteen I discovered writing as an escape from a world of reality in which I felt acutely uncomfortable.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Forward to Sweet Bird of Youth
Caged birds accept each other but flight is what they long for.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Camino Real
There ain't nothin' more powerful than the odor of mendacity...You can smell it. It smells like death.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
Funerals are pretty compared to death. Funerals are quiet, but deaths not always.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, A Streetcar Named Desire
I don’t want realism. I want magic!
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, A Streetcar Named Desire
It is planned speeches that contain lies or dissimulations, not what you blurt out so spontaneously in one instant.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Forward to Sweet Bird of Youth
In memory everything seems to happen to music.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, The Glass Menagerie
I think that hate is a thing, a feeling, that can only exist where there is no understanding.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Forward to Sweet Bird of Youth
I have always depended on the kindness of strangers.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, A Streetcar Named Desire
I can't expose a human weakness on the stage unless I know it through having it myself.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Forward to Sweet Bird of Youth
Silence about a thing just magnifies it.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
We have to distrust each other. It is our only defence against betrayal.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Camino Real
Guilt is universal.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Forward to Sweet Bird of Youth
The human animal is a beast that dies but the fact that he’s dying don’t give him pity for others, no sir.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
We are all civilized people, which means that we are all savages at heart but observing a few amenities of civilized behavior.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Forward to Sweet Bird of Youth
Men don’t want anything they get too easy. But on the other hand, men lose interest quickly.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, A Streetcar Named Desire
Life is all memory except for the one present moment that goes by so quick you can hardly catch it going.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, The Milk Train Doesn't Stop Here Anymore
The color, the grace and levitation, the structural pattern in motion, the quick interplay of live beings, suspended like fitful lightning in a cloud, these things are the play, not words on paper, nor thoughts and ideas of an author, those shabby things snatched off basement counters at Gimbel's.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Afterword to Camino Real
There is a time for departure, even when there is no certain place to go.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, Camino Real
All your Western theologies, the whole mythology of them, are based on the concept of God as a senile delinquent.
TENNESSEE WILLIAMS, The Night of the Iguana
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26 мар 2011, 13:59

 Questions about theater in our life
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1. What springs to mind when you hear the word ‘theatre’?
2. Do you use the British spelling ‘theatre’ or the American spelling ‘theater’? Does it matter which one you use?
3. How often do you go to the theatre?
4. Is the theatre only for rich people?
5. What do you like and dislike about the theatre?
6. What’s the best thing you’ve ever seen at the theatre?
7. Would you like to work as a theatre critic?
8. Are theatre tickets easy to get in your country?
9. How do you feel when you sit in a theatre before the performance begins?
10. What’s the nicest theatre you’ve ever been to?
11. Why is the theatre important?
12. What kind of theatre history does your country have?
13. Do you prefer watching a play at the theatre or a movie at the movie theatre (cinema)?
14. Do you think theatre tickets are reasonably priced?
15. Have you ever been to the theatre in another country?
16. Do you think people will always be interested in the theatre?
17. What questions would you like to ask a theatre actor?
18. Would you like to perform or act on stage at the theatre?
19. Would you like to see a theatre play in English?
20. What’s are the differences between movies and plays?
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