Branwen and Other Dance Dramas and Plays

Disgrifiad | Description

  • ISBN: 9780863818561
  • Author: Tony Conran
  • Publication October 2003
  • Format: Paperback, 148x210 mm, 300 pages

A compelling compilation of plays, with plots taken from the Mabinogion, by one of Wales's most innovative writers.

Gwales Review
Branwen is the one full-length drama in this collection of plays (from 1980-1995) by Tony Conran. All are in his distinctive poetic style, using ancient myth and modern politics to illuminate each other; many also use dance as the main or a major part of the action.

Branwen is a 'revolutionary tragedy' powerfully retelling the classic Welsh story using contemporary political concepts. This shows Branwen sacrificed to her brothers’ ideals as well as Efnisien’s malice. Traditional Morris dance-forms are ingeniously used to express action.

Blodeuwedd commemorates a production originally told through Blodeuwedd's monologues and two dancers. Conran has here added a storyteller to clarify the narrative. The poetry is powerful, savage and sometimes jarring; the format open to many styles of interpretation.

Five Women is a sequel to Branwen but depicting victims of a modern war-damaged world. Not entirely successful as a one-act play, it feels more like a first Act yet to be finished. Ceridwen and The Korrigans, both rather brief, tell parts of the Gwion-Taliesin story with Ceridwen as a 'mad scientist'. Meinir and Rhys uses the Noh form to tell a sad Welsh folktale of a lost bride.

The Vow is a radio adaptation of Saunders Lewis's mediaeval romance drama about Amlyn and Amig - a grim and tormented tale of divided loyalty, which is oddly called a comedy.

This collection makes available an interesting body of poetic drama by a Welsh writer who (like Yeats in his Plays for dancers) uses myth and dance to explore questions of personal and national loyalty.

Caroline Clark

Pris | Price : £1.00

RRP: £8.50

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