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CIRCUS DIARIES: Big Top Typewriter

In Books, Cabaret, Circus, Opinion, Reviews by Katharine KavanaghLeave a Comment

Here is a book that hits all my buttons: It’s a book about circus; it’s a book about writing; most importantly, it’s a book about writing about circus! David Lewis Hammarstrom wrote his first circus review at the age of 14, frustrated then – as I often am still now – about the lack of critical appraisal in a mainstream media that doesn’t know its circus onions, or in fan press that accentuates only positives and gives little sense of relative perspective.

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CIRCUS DIARIES: The Routledge Circus Studies Reader by Edited by Peta Tait and Katie Lavers

In Books, Cabaret, Circus, Features, Opinion, Reviews by Katharine KavanaghLeave a Comment

The Circus Studies reader from Routledge is the first of its kind, combining academic essays from a global collection of scholars into one English language volume. The result is a rich and diverse collection of insights and research angles that offers inspiration both to newcomers upon the subject and to worldly circus veterans.

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BOOK REVIEW: Facing the Fear, by Bella Merlin

In Books, Native, Opinion, Quotes, Reviews by Susan ElkinLeave a Comment

Stage fright – both the dread and the actuality of it – looms very large in the lives of many, if not most, actors. And occasionally it becomes headline news. Remember Stephen Fry and Cell Mates or, more recently, Lenny Henry in Educating Rita at Chichester last year? And it was probably stage fright that lay at the base of Laurence Fox’s recent angry outburst in The Patriotic Traitor at the Park Theatre. That’s the trouble. When something goes wrong for an actor, it’s very public. Hence the terror.

CIRCUS DIARIES: Two recent book reviews

In Books, Circus, Features, Opinion, Reviews by Katharine KavanaghLeave a Comment

These two volumes approach the subject of circus in full acknowledgement of its mythic status in popular culture. Simon presents her history of the most well reported performers and organizations of the last 250 years through the lens of their influence and impact on other artists’ work, with particular reference to the visual arts and literature. Semiotician Bouissac explores ways in which the viewer can step behind the curtain of pop-cultural expectations and look deeper into the layers of meaning and symbolism at play in any circus production.

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CIRCUS DIARIES: Two recent book reviews

In Books, Circus, Features, Opinion, Reviews by Katharine KavanaghLeave a Comment

These two volumes approach the subject of circus in full acknowledgement of its mythic status in popular culture. Simon presents her history of the most well reported performers and organizations of the last 250 years through the lens of their influence and impact on other artists’ work, with particular reference to the visual arts and literature. Semiotician Bouissac explores ways in which the viewer can step behind the curtain of pop-cultural expectations and look deeper into the layers of meaning and symbolism at play in any circus production.