Sunday, February 14th 2016
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Workshop on staging 2: scenes including stage-directions and positions

Stage-directions in bold

Example of positions on stage Le Joueur (The Gamester) by Jean-François Regnard, IV.13

Workshop on staging 2: scenes including stage-directions and positions
Hector is alone on stage

VALÈRE, enters, wearing a hat; he has cards in his hand

HECTOR, to himself.
Here he comes; alas, his misfortune can be seen on his face.

VALÈRE, to himself.
No, Hell and its Furies never ever were so nasty; Destiny, I praise your tricks; I’ve nothing to lose and all your wishes are fulfilled; your fury is strong but now you can’t do anything against me. Find another victim! (He tears his cards and throws them on the ground.)

HECTOR, aside.
He’s broke.

My heart is devoured by snakes, everything is against me. (He grabs Hector’s tie.) Speak! Did you ever see such misfortune and unfair situation? I’m so desperate! Murdered more than twenty times by Hazard! I’ve lost everything… Answer me, you torturer!

But I’ve done nothing wrong!

Have you ever seen such appalling betrayal? Your mischief triumphs, how cruel of you Fate! I’m done! You seduced me to kill me more easily… Ah! I’m out of my mind and could do anything… even hang me!

Fortunately, you don’t have any money Sir, and thus can’t buy any halter… Would you like to have dinner?

Go to hell! Ah, beautiful Angélique, would you be so kind to help me? I will always love you but will you always love me?... Finally, I’m not so unlucky since my furious heart still loves you.

We’re broke and suddenly our love flourishes again.

VALÈRE, puts his hat.
Calm down Valère. Let’s keep control. (to Hector.) Bring this chair to me.
(Hector brings a chair.)

VALÈRE seated.
Give me a book.

(Hector 1, Valère 2)

Which one?

The first book you can find. It doesn’t matter. Just bring me one from the library.

HECTOR, goes to the library, and comes back with a book.
Here is Seneca.

Go on. Read.

You want me to read Seneca?

Yes. Don’t you know how to read?

Nah, you’re jocking.

Open and read any page.

I’m not quite sure whether Seneca will survive my reading.

Will you read or not?

HECTOR reading.
« CHAPTER SIX. Disdaining Goods.
» Fortune can mislead us and all goods are ephemeral and forgery. Possessing them confuses people, but losing them is easy; the wise man wins a lot when he gets rid of them all.

The day Seneca wrote this eloquent chapter, he most probably was broke.

VALÈRE stands; to himself, with alacrity.
Losing twenty times! I can feel deep in my heart fury. (He seats, and says to Hector.) Carry on! Now!

HECTOR, reading.
» Gold comparable with women: they should not be touched if you are not in love with them, for women and gold, when approached are two big remoras to Philosophy. (speaking.) You no longer have a fiancée, and you no longer have any money, thus, we’ll be able to philosophize about life, for ever and ever.

VALÈRE to himself.
Sweet Angélique, you’ll be the only one to judge my fate, …… (to Hector.) Will you read this chapter to its end or will you not?

HECTOR, reading.
» What should…

May fate and its setbacks be thanked, since this happy misfortune makes me fall again. (to Hector.) Is it done?

HECTOR, reading.
» What should human nature be? Having less, means less suffering. To be very fortunate means to possess little. (Speaking.) What a nice sentence! What a great thinker! Seneca, Sir, is excellent. Was he from Paris?

No, from Roma. (To himself). Ten times losing at “triple-card”!

Ah, Sir, one day we’ll die on manure.

VALÈRE, standing, and speaking quickly
I must break these chains! I have one hundred ideas to kill myself: river, fire, poison, and sword.

(Valère 1, Hector 2)

Why don’t you sing a little song, Sir? Your Singing Master has arrived. Singing may help you calm down.

VALÈRE, to Hector, strangling him
What? To sing!!!


VALÈRE strangling Hector
You want me to sing, monster? And I tell you that I want to stab myself; life is a burden; life is unbearable. (He pushes Hector on his right.)

(Hector 1, Valère 2)

But you claimed this morning that life is enjoyable. “A gambler always is happy: his pocket is a treasure, he turns copper into gold”. That’s what you told me.

Ah! I’m more than furious!!!

Sir, calm down! Your father is coming.

Sabine Chaouche

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