Photo: Theatre Director Cheryl Faraone, Ph.D.
Atlantic Highlands Arts Council’s Artists and Authors Series
“Sir Tom Stoppard —The Outsider”, A Lecture by Theatre Director Cheryl Faraone, Ph.D.
Atlantic Highlands, NJ – On Friday, March 20 at 7:30 pm the Atlantic Highlands Arts Council presents an artist and author lecture series featuring director Cheryl Faraone, Ph.D., at the Arts Council’s new home, the Arts Corner; 135 First Avenue, Atlantic Highlands.
Cheryl’s particular interest is contemporary British drama and the work of playwright Tom Stoppard in particular. Stoppard considers himself to be the consummate “insider/outsider” and says “Writing dialogue is the most respectable way I know of arguing with myself.”
With the help of actors, Ms. Faraone will discuss Stoppard’s stories through the filter of his biography.
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Cheryl Faraone has been a professor of theatre at Middlebury College in Vermont since 1986. She is also a co-founder and producing director of two NYC theatre companies, NY Theatre Studio (1977-1984) and Potomac Theatre Project (1987 to the present).
Her educational background includes a B.A. and an M.F.A. from the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC and a Ph.D. from Florida State University in Tallahassee. Her dissertation is entitled “Tom Stoppard: the Plays and Productions.”
Over the years, she has directed many of Stoppard’s plays in both professional and academic settings, including Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, Albert’s Bridge, Jumpers, Travesties, Arcadia, The Real Inspector Hound, After Magritte and The Real Thing.
Playwright Sir Tom Stoppard was born Tomás Straüssler on July 3, 1937 in Czechoslovakia. By the age of four, Tomas, along with his mother and brother, arrived in India as refugees from Singapore, where his father, who had been sent there as a physician, was killed after the Japanese invasion. Tomas’s mother remarried a major in the British Army, Kenneth Stoppard, who was stationed in India. When the family moved to England in 1946, Tomas’s name was changed to Tom Stoppard.
Educated at schools in Nottinghamshire and Yorkshire, Tom became a journalist working for the Western Daily Press (1954-8) and the Bristol Evening World (1958-60), and became theatre critic for Scene magazine in London (1962-3) before writing his breakthrough work (at the age of 26), Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead.
“Stoppardian” became a term describing works using wit and comedy while addressing philosophical concepts; the playwright’s early work was at times accused of sacrificing emotion for cleverness. Nonetheless, the plays repeatedly give voice to outsiders, lurking on the margins of history or of literature. Images of loss and dissociation drift through the plays. Many have speculated about how being a transplanted Czech affected Stoppard’s identity; he says that the transition had an immensely positive effect.
“I came to England when I was eight, and I don’t know why, I don’t particularly wish to understand why but I just seized England and it seized me. Within minutes it seems to me, I had no sense of being in an alien land and my feeling for, my empathy for English landscape, English architecture, English character, all that, has just somehow become stronger and stronger…As soon as we all landed up in England, I knew I had found home. I embraced the language and landscape.”
Tickets are $10 and available at the door or online at www.aharts.org. Tickets are limited.
Thank you to our sponsor MedExpress for its generous support.
The AHAC is a registered 501(c)3 non-profit organization. The mission of the Atlantic Highlands Arts Council is to strengthen community through the arts. For further information on the Arts Council, visit www.aharts.org.
This program is made possible in part by Monmouth Arts through funding from the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the New Jersey State Council on the Arts.