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The Stanislavski Centre/Routledge annual lecture 2014

The Stanislavski Centre/Routledge annual lecture 2014

Marble bust, and feet of clay: Stanislavski’s reputation

Professor Laurence Senelick

Fletcher Professor of Drama and Oratory, Tufts University

The Rose Theatre, Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance

Friday 14th March, 19.00


Soviet culture turned Stanislavski into a national monument and his System into a rigid orthodoxy.  In the West, however, the preferable image was of the pre-Revolutionary Stanislavski, founder of the Moscow Art Theatre and associate of Chekhov, while the favoured view of the System was that promulgated by former members of the First Studio.  Yet Stanislavski was a far more complex, multi-dimensional figure than either of these images would suggest, and his System far more fluid and elusive.  As Laurence Senelick will try to demonstrate, many of these unfamiliar facets are to be found in his diaries and correspondence, which reveal a man fascinating in his contradictions.


 Laurence Senelick holds a Ph.D. from Harvard. His expertise is in Russian theatre and drama, history of popular entertainment, gender and performance, history of directing and classical theory. He is the author or editor of more than twenty-five books, the most recent being The American Stage: Writing on the American Theatre, A Historical Dictionary of Russian Theatre and Stanislavsky: A Life in Letters.

Others books include: The Chekhov Theatre: A Century of the Plays in Performance and The Changing Room: Sex, Drag, and Theatre, as well as over a hundred articles in learned journals. He is a former Fellow of the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation and the Institute for Advanced Studies in Berlin. Prof. Senelick was named Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2011, and has been named a Distinguished Scholar by both the American Society of Theatre Research and the Faculty Research Awards Council of Tufts University.

He is the recipient of grants and awards from, among others, the National Endowment for the Humanities and the American Council of Learned Societies. He is a widely produced translator of plays from such authors as Chekhov and Feydeau, and director at Tufts of his own translations of The Inspector General, The Bakkhai, and Anything to Declare? He has acted and directed with such organizations as the Loeb Drama Center, the Boston Lyric Opera, Boston Baroque, the Actors Theatre of Louisville, and the revue The Proposition. He recently devised new courses on Cabaret, Theatre Iconography, and Low Comedy and played Beckett’s Krapp’s Last Tape at the Balch Arena Theatre. His recipes appear in the Bon Appetit cookbooks.


Tickets: £7.00 (Full) – £5.00 (Concessions)

Free to all RBC students and staff

Please book online:

For further information, please contact Dr Paul Fryer (


This event is generously sponsored by Routledge

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