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Peter Brook - comments from the international press after his death


Peter Brook – word known Englith theater director in the eyes of the world. Review of international press from „The Washington Post” to „Le Figaro”. Peter Brook died July 2 in Paris. He was 97.

Peter Brook's death became the focus of many international newspapers.Harrison Smith from the „The Washington Post”underlined that, „ Peter Brook, a visionary English theater director who staged groundbreaking productions on both sides of the Atlantic, helping to demonstrate his belief that the trappings of conventional theater — the red curtain, the music, the costumes, the spotlight — were inessential to the art form”.

The most interesting thing seems to be the variety of his art: His work ranged from the minimalist to the grandiose, from a stripped-down staging of Bizet’s opera “Carmen” to a nine-hour adaptation of the Sanskrit epic the “Mahabharata,” which he originally staged at a limestone quarry complete with an artificial lake.- added Harrison Smith.

The most important field of his interest was Shakespeare. Chris Wiegand, stage director,in Guardian underlines that „Brook redefined the way we think about theatre with his productions at Stratford’s Royal Shakespeare Company; at the Bouffes du Nord, the dilapidated Parisian music hall which he made his base for more than 30 years; in African villages, where his actors improvised performances; and on the stages both grand and modest visited by his globetrotting ensemble.”

Brook’s landmark 1970 RSC version of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, influenced by both a Jerome Robbins ballet and the Peking Circus, was performed in a white cube of a set and boasted trapezes, stilts and a forest of steel wire.

Jacques Pessis, at „Le Figaro” describes his relationship with Paris stages, which begin in 1970. „He left his native England to settle in Paris where he discovered a hall in ruins which he renovated and turned into the Théâtre des Bouffes du Nord. The success was immediate. At the dawn of the 1980s, he decided to stage Chekhov's last play there, La Cerisaie. This was a story of a family which, at the time of the sale of a house loaded with memories, passes from the “time of cherries” to time of sadness. Peter Brook directed it in 1982 for the small screen, by this capture obtained a success of audience much higher than that hoped for by the broadcasters and the director himself.

The „Carmen” whose set consisted practically of a heap of sand, and Brooks' version of the Indian epic »Mahabharata« , which premiered in Avignon 1985, visited many countries. - reminds „Der Spiegel”.

The story of Peter Brook is long and long and successful. It will remain one of the most important topics of the international press for a long time.