Oscar Wilde's dramatic text of Salome is based on the biblical story of Salome, daughter of Herodias and stepdaughter to Herod. The sensational story highlights the brutality, dysfunction and outright cruelty of Herod's household, in addition to revealing the intensely manipulative and sensual nature of Salome herself. Despite the historical setting of the work its connection to actual biblical lore is only referential; the work certainly invites a contemporary treatment, though finding and drawing those parallels while maintaining the grandeur of Strauss' towering score can be challenging. Unfortunately, the 2019 Spoleto presentation transported the work in a contemporary setting but did not succeed in realizing a production comparable to the typical standards of Spoleto, a festival that is committed to presenting the highest level of contemporary, classical, and completely new works from mid-May to June each year. The 42nd anniversary of the seventeen-day festival in 2019 featured opera, dance, music,...
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Book Review| November 01 2019
Salome. Directed by Caurier, Patrice and Leiser, Moshe. Music by Strauss, Richard. Libretto by Lachmann, Hedwig after Wilde, Oscar.
Charleston Gaillard Center. Spoleto Festival USA.
Charleston, South Carolina.
Coastal Carolina University
STEVE EARNEST is Professor of Theatre at Coastal Carolina University in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. He holds a PhD from the University of Colorado and an MFA from the University of Miami. Previous publications include a book, The State Acting Academy of East Berlin (1999), articles in Texas Theatre Journal, European Stages, New Theatre Quarterly and numerous reviews in Theatre Journal, Ecumenica, Opera Journal, and Latin American Theatre Review.
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Ecumenica (2019) 12 (2): 140–143.
Steve Earnest; Salome. Ecumenica 1 November 2019; 12 (2): 140–143. doi: https://doi.org/10.5325/ecumenica.12.2.0140
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