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Spring Awakening (Methuen's Theatre Classics) (Modern Classics) [Paperback]

Frank Wedekind , Edward Bond
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
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Book Description

13 Nov 1980 Modern Classics
Wedekind's play about adolescent sexuality is as disturbing today as when it was first produced Wedekind's notorious play Spring Awakening was written in 1891 but had to wait the greater part of a century before it received its first complete performance in Britain, at the National Theatre in 1974. The production was highly praised, much of its strength deriving from this translation by Edward Bond and Elisabeth Bond Pable, 'scrupulously faithful both to Wedekind's irony and his poetry.' The Times This translation of Spring Awakening was first performed at the National Theatre, London on 24 May 1974. For this edition the translator, Edward Bond, has written a note on the play and a factual introduction to Wedekind's life and work.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Methuen Drama; New edition edition (13 Nov 1980)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0413476200
  • ISBN-13: 978-0413476203
  • Product Dimensions: 18.6 x 12.1 x 0.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 176,300 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"Scrupulously faithful both to Wedekind's irony and his poetry."--"The Times of London"

About the Author

Frank Wedekind (1864-1918) was a journalist, advertising manager, secretary to a circus, cabaret artiste, satirist, convict and actor as well as the author of twenty-one plays, many of which reflect aspects of his extraordinary career. He himself paid for the publication of Spring Awakening (1891), though it was not staged till 1906. (In England it was banned from public performance until 1963.) Earth Spirit (1895), the first of his plays to be seen on stage (1898), introduced the sexually voracious Lulu, who also figured in Pandora's Box (1904) and subsequently in Alban Berg's opera (Lulu, 1935) and in Peter Barnes' conflation of the two plays seen in England in 1970. Other notable plays include The Marquis of Keith (1900; British premiere, 1974), King Nicolo (1902), Castle Wetterstein (1910) and Franziska (1912). Wedekind was greatly admired by Brecht, and his satiric songs still have considerable bite.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you only ever direct one play.... 22 Jan 2003
Edward Bond's translation is without a doubt the strongest of Wedekind's work. This play will get into your head and never leave. I have recently had the pleasure of directing this wonderful text. Yes it is heavy, covering rape, aborton, suicide and homosexuality, bent doctors and a mothers very strange view of how to bring up a child. But don't be deterred. You can't help but feel for the characters, having their youth stunted by an overprotective society. The adults of the play think they know best, yet they cause all the trouble. Spring Awakening is so relevent for today. It is shocking, but only through familiarity of the situations.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing can change under the sun 3 Dec 2008
This plays reveals a common theme at the time, the enslavement of young people in Germany within their boarding schools. Törless is the most famous victim of this environment. But here we are dealing with Moritz and Melchior, proving that M&M's is not the best of medicine in life. This total control of the young people's life that has only one objective, to study, to learn Latin and translate Greek, goes along with an absolute desexualization of their psyche in the name of an extreme puritan vision of ethics and life. This causes a depressive existential vision in these teenagers who look for some satisfaction anyway they can, some erotic information and literature, some friendship among themselves as a surrogate of the love they need and are deprived of, even banging up the first girl they find on their road and who knows nothing about love or rather intercourse. This produces a drama, of course. One fourteen year old boy, Moritz, commits suicide in his boarding school that expels his best friend, Melchior, who had passed some information about the physical activities they are all dreaming of, and had impregnated a certain Wendla who will die of an overdose of an abortive drug given to her by her own mother. This sexual information is considered as the unethical trigger of the suicide. Melchior's family then decides to send him to a house of correction where he discovers real evil and convinces himself he is the most guilty human being in the world. He is then tempted by crime or, because of some remnant of ethics, by suicide to put away his good for nothing person. This dilemma is set up on the stage after Melchior's escape from the house of correction in the last scenes in the graveyard where the suicidee Moritz is buried. Read more ›
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2.0 out of 5 stars Very poor translation 30 Nov 2013
By Kat
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I suppose for 63p you can't expect a perfect translation, but considering the original German Kindle edition is completely free, I didn't see a problem with paying a small fee for a translation - to make sure I've understood the German fully.

However, I was really disappointed at the quality of this translation. I'm not sure if this has been translated by a native English speaker, but unfortunately it doesn't feel like it. Very odd-sounding sentences, with poor word choices. At times it feels like a computer has just translated chunks of it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Review from Maddie 12 14 Aug 2011
such a fantastic book :)
its really meaningful and just beautiful writing.
Just amazing, I recomend it to anyone.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good Book although... 21 May 2010
I have bought the musical version of this book and this translation to get a better understanding of the characters. Although i have only began reading through it i did spot a few spelling mistakes, but it seems an excellent read so far! It is humorous at times, though the reader may not be certain if this is intentionally done or not.

I would suggest reading this version and the musical version!!!
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