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A Delicate Balance (Anglais) Broché – 1966

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Amazon.com: HASH(0x9131ee1c) étoiles sur 5 19 commentaires
22 internautes sur 22 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x91558bb8) étoiles sur 5 Nice Play! 23 octobre 2000
Par Tom White - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
To date, Edward Albee has won three Pulitzer prizes, has written one of the most famous plays ever--WHO'S AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF? (surprisingly not among the three)--and also has written the most famous one-act ever, THE ZOO STORY. A DELICATE BALANCE is one of the Pulitzer winners; anyone who cares about theatre will love this. In performance an electrifying evening, it is also a darn good read--again and again. A tragedy at times hilarious, the stylized piece is an examination of friendship contrasted with family, in which the playwright creates six delicous characters--roles actors especially love and often perform brilliantly. Katherine Hepburn's filmed version comes to mind--a near perfect expression of the matriarch Agnes, who has several problems: her alcoholic sister is drinking in the living room, her daughter is coming home after a failed 4th marriage, and her friends Edna and Harry have decided to move in because they are "afraid" of something. Agnes's husband Tobias is polite, detached, and reasonable. Against bristling tension, the author uses drunken Claire as comic counterpoint to brilliant effect, giving her an accordion (of all things) as prop with which to accent and poke fun. (There's a wonderful sight gag near the end where this character, who isn't supposed to have one drink, is discovered holding two.) We also smile when mousy Edna tries to re-decorate Agnes's home and speaks to the divorcing Julia as if she were her own daughter. (How easily shyness moves to assertiveness, then imperceptibly to cruelty.) So we laugh to keep from crying--but laugh we do! And although Agnes is unforgettable, nevertheless it is Tobias who gets the climactic "aria," an attempt to put his house in order. The dramatist calls our bluff on what we mean by "friends," fusing big ideas in three elegant acts, crystallizing mysterious beauty from carefully chosen words. The result is a theatrical touchstone, one of Edward Albee's many masterpieces, a magnificent gem of a play.
8 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x91558c0c) étoiles sur 5 One of Albee's Best 29 juin 2003
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Albee, the playwright who invented one of the more complicated and vivid relationships ever in a play in ZOO STORY, has again demonstrated his intimate knowledge of the deeper motives behind human interaction. Every interaction between characters in this play -- from long monologues to short snippets of conversation -- has behind it some manner of conflict.
Everybody in this play needs change, and can only reach it through the destruction of others; Tobias and Agnes who simply want to be left alone, but whose house has been invaded; Julia, the daughter who is betrayed by the fact that her parents gave away her room; Claire, who wants only to excercise her right to a good time; Edna and Harry who aren't quite sure what they need, and subsequently frustrate everyone else.
This is a very heavy play, but written in a such a way that is has the guise of being a comedy. A must-read for anybody that loves drama.
13 internautes sur 18 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x91558de0) étoiles sur 5 READ IT READ IT READ IT READ IT READ IT 12 septembre 1998
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
I am writing ANOTHER review because I CANNOT EXPRESS to you how wonderful this play is. I just read it for the second time. It is one of the three best plays I have every read in my life, and believe me, I have read all the plays worth reading. This is almost as good as "Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?" Once again, I love love love love love this play and all the characters. There is a movie. Don't see it. The play is better. Read the play. There are many great moments: Tobias' "cat speech," Tobias' memorable four-page closing speech, all of Act Two Scene Two, all of Act Three, Claire's disturbing interpretation of what it's like to be an alcoholic...they go on and on. This is my theory of what the play is about essentially: this is the story of a family who does nothing all day but sit and drink and b*tch about how terrible their lives are. They have lots of money. They have good friends and a good family. But they have let their lives go to waste. They've let life pass them by. Now they are old and sit back and realize how much they've missed. But not before much turmoil and anger are let out. There are a husband and wife in the play who sleep in separate beds, until one night, for lack of room, they are forced to sleep together and they realize: THEY LIKE IT. But they have wasted years and years of sleeping in separate beds. Am I rambling like a lunatic? Sorry. Just read it please or else I have typed all of this for no reason at all.
HASH(0x91e07330) étoiles sur 5 Mysterious, Odd, Inexplicable 21 août 2014
Par Gary F. Taylor - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Edward Albee (b. 1928) is best known for the landmark WHOSE AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?--but he is also the author of numerous other distinguished plays, including TINY ALICE, ALL OVER, and THREE TALL WOMEN. First performed in 1966, A DELICATE BALANCE was an immediate critical success, and although it has not been as popular with the public as some other Albee works, it has been widely studied, performed, and frequently revived.

The play is performed in three acts, with two scenes in the second act. It is played on a single unit set, displaying an upscale living area on the first floor of a wealthy home. The cast includes four women and two men. Three of the women and the two men are in their fifties. The fourth woman is in her thirties. The script is extremely demanding and requires expert players; past performers have included Jessica Tandy, Hume Cronyn, Elaine Stritch, John Lithgow, and Martha Plimpton, among others.

Many of Albee's plays have an "experimental" quality, and this is particularly true of A DELICATE BALANCE, which does not have a cohesive plot and which possesses an open-ended quality in which little is explained and we are left to wonder at the characters' motivations. In Act One, Agnes and Tobias, an wealthy but aging couple, are seen having drinks after dinner. Agnes' manner drifts from vague to sharp; Tobias, however, seems permanently vague. They are interrupted by Claire, Agnes' sister, who lives with them. Claire is an alcoholic and Agnes despises her. They argue in a nasty but oddly random sort of way until Harry and Edna, their best friends, arrive. They have suddenly become frightened in their own home, and, running from their unspecified fears, have come unannounced to spend the night.

In Act Two, the situation is complicated by the arrival of Julia, Tobias and Agnes' daughter. Julia has left her fourth husband and is outraged to find Harry and Edna in her room. As the play progresses through Act Two and Act Three, the various characters begin to assume each other's identies. This is particularly true of Edna, who becomes remarkably like Agnes in terms of speech and manner. In a very real sense they battle over territory, over who has the right to stay in the house and who does not. At the end of the play, Harry and Edna go their own home--but the fear that drove them is never specified, and we are left to suspect it is a fear of the status quo, ennui, and emotional emptiness that seems to characterize all the personalities in the play.

A DELICATE BALANCE is a fascinating read, and in the hands of a master cast it would no doubt be fascinating to watch. But this is not an easy play, for there are few things in terms of character or plot that you can cling to. Which ultimately seems to be the point of the play as a whole. Recommended, but not a light read.

GFT, Amazon Reviewer
HASH(0x91e07450) étoiles sur 5 my favorite Albee play 5 octobre 2008
Par datura2002 - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Broché
Edward Albee is best-known for his play Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, a Broadway classic that was made into a film starring a young Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton. However, this play, A Delicate Balance, is my favorite out of Albee's plays, and I've read nearly all of them. It won Albee the first of his 3 Pulitzer Prizes, and was made into a film starring Katherine Hepburn.

The story focuses on an aging WASP couple, Agnes and Tobias. Agnes' alcoholic sister, Claire, lives with the couple. Then events, or rather people, intrude into this carefully ordered household. First, two old friends, Harry and Edna, arrive without warning and ask to stay for an indeterminate time. Then Julia, the daughter of Agnes and Tobias, also asks for refuge. Cracks form in the veneer of control and peace that Agnes has cultivated. The character of Claire (a delightful drunk if there ever was one) steals the show as she alternately mocks the situation and tries to help the people involved.

As in Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, the characters occupy intensely charged domestic landscapes, inner spaces of anxiety and dread, and the climaxes of both plays are punctuated by speeches from the main characters. These monologues roll out with a cathartic force equivalent to operatic arias. True to its title, though, the play as a whole feels restrained and delicate, its turmoil gurgling underneath.

Since Albee is a playwright who is extremely sensitive to the musical, rhythmic aspect of drama, his plays can unfold in a reader's mind as easily, and perhaps more perfectly than if they were realized on a stage. Albee himself has compared playwrights' scripts to musical scores. Like a musician who can read music and then "hear" it in his mind, those readers who are comfortable reading dramatic dialogue and stage directions can easily experience A Delicate Balance in the privacy of their rooms.
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