Description - Playssters / The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov
Chekov wrote that 'narrative is my legal wife and drama a flamboyant, rowdy, impudent, exhausting mistress'. As a playwright he was subversive, even revolutionary, breaking away from the prevailing fashions of contemporary theatre to create an exhilarating new form of drama.At a time when the Russian stage was dominated by farces, formulaic melodramas and vaudevilles, Chekhov created plays without heroes and villains, focused instead on the individual grappling with a moral dilemma. In place of the happy ending came ambiguity, in place of dramatic conflict came the solitary quest. He defied his audience's expectations, and the premiere of his first major play, Ivanov (1887), was met with bafflement, rage and scorn.With sensitive explorations of the themes of love, work and time, their complex characters and their blurred boundaries between sorrow and comedy, his plays remain as provocative and subtle today.
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(197mm x 131mm x 19mm)
Penguin Books Ltd
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
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Book Reviews - Playssters / The Cherry Orchard by Anton Chekhov
Author Biography - Anton Chekhov
Born on January 29, 1860, in Taganrog, Russia, on the Sea of Azov, Anton Pavlovich Chekhov would eventually become one of Russia's most cherished storytellers. Especially fond of vaudevilles and French farces, he produced some hilarious one-acts, but it is his full-length tragedies that have secured him a place among the greatest dramatists of all time. Chekhov began writing short stories during his days as a medical student at the University of Moscow. After graduating in 1884 with a degree in medicine, he began to freelance as a journalist and writer of comic sketches. Early in his career, he mastered the form of the one-act and produced several masterpieces of this genre including The Bear (1888) in which a creditor hounds a young widow, but becomes so impressed when she agrees to fight a duel with him, that he proposes marriage, and The Wedding (1889) in which a bridegroom's plans to have a general attend his wedding ceremony backfire when the general turns out to be a retired naval captain 'of the second rank'. Ivanov (1887), Chekhov's first full-length play, a fairly immature work compared to his later plays, examines the suicide of a young man very similar to Chekhov himself in many ways. His next play, The Wood Demon (1888) was also fairly unsuccessful. In fact, it was not unti