VOA慢速英语[娱乐报道] 戏剧演员因太像特朗普而招批评

来源:VOA 2019-02-04




Shakespeare Play with Trump-Looking Julius Caesar Draws Criticism 

The Public Theaters production ofJulius Caesarin New York uses the words written by playwright William Shakespeare 400 years ago.
The difference is the actor playing Julius Caesar looks a lot like President Donald Trump. And, as anyone familiar with Shakespeares play knows, Caesar is killed in Act 3 by senators who fear he had become too power hungry.
Laura Sheaffer has attended Public Theaters Free Shakespeare plays in New York Citys Central Park for years.
But she objected to seeing a character looking like Trump covered with blood in the assassination scene. As he dies, the actor delivers one of Shakespeares most famous lines, “Et Tu, Brute” -- meant to show Caesars surprise that his good friend Brutus joined his killing.
Sheaffer says, “I dont love President Trump, but hes the president. You cant assassinate him on a stage.”
Her comments on a radio program brought more criticism to the play. Two Public Theater sponsors, Delta Airlines and Bank of America, responded by cutting funds to support the Public Theater.
No matter what your political stance may be, the graphic staging ofJulius Caesarat this summers Free Shakespeare in the Park does not reflect Delta Air Linesvalues,” Delta says in a statement.
The Public Theater, which began performing plays nearly 60 years ago, defends the production. It notes the play has led toheated discussions.” But it says that isexactly the goalof public theater.
Charlotte Canning is a drama professor at the University of Texas at Austin. Canning says the criticism would be understandable if the play suggests violence is acceptable.
But what the play does is show how awful violence is,” she says. “And things dont work out so well for those who carry out Caesars killing.”
Act 5 ends with Brutus killing himself with his own sword.
Canning also notes that a recent production ofJulius Caesarin Minnesota included a Caesar character that looked like former President Barack Obama. But the play did not draw the same criticism as the New York production.
Free speech is part of the U.S. Constitution
Robert Thompson is a professor at Syracuse University and an expert on popular culture. He says the U.S. Constitutions First Amendment guarantee of free speech means critics of theJulius Caesarproduction cannot shut it down. But the issues raised by the production arecomplicated.”
Thompson wonders if the same message about the corrupting influences of power could be made without making Julius Caesar look like Donald Trump. In the play, Caesars wife speaks with a Slavic accent, just like Trumps wife, Melania.
On the other hand, Thompson says Shakespeares plays are sometimes difficult for modern theater audiences to understand. And making Caesar look like Trump makes the connections to political power more apparent.
This isnt childrens theater
Laurence Maslon is the deputy director of New York Universitys graduate acting program. He says no one should be surprised that a play by New Yorks Public Theater might be controversial.
Maslon says that one of Public Theaters first shows, the rock musicalHairin 1967, drew heavy criticism. At issue were scenes with performers with no clothing and a scene in which young people burned draft cards to protest the Vietnam War.
The Public Theater is not the Little Red Riding Hood Childrens Theater,” Maslon says. In other words, the theater produces plays on serious issues for adults and not children.
According to New York Times Theater critic Jesse Green, only three words were changed from Shakespeares original script in the Public Theater production.
The production added three words: “On Fifth Avenueto Shakespeares lineIf Caesar had stabbed their mothers, they would have done no less.”
That line goes back to Trumps successful run for president, when he said: "I could stand in the middle of Fifth Avenue and shoot somebody, and I wouldn't lose any voters."
Donald Trump Jr., the presidents son, tweeted his objections to theJulius Caesarproduction.
I wonder how much of thisartis funded by taxpayers? Serious question, when doesartbecome political speech & does that change things?
The National Endowment for the Arts, which Trump wants to eliminate under his budget proposal, says it did not fund the production.
I'm Bryan Lynn.
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