David Barnett invites readers, students and theatre-makers to discover new ways of apprehending and making use of Brecht in this clear and accessible study of Brecht's theories and practices. The book analyses how Brecht's ideas can come alive in rehearsal and performance, and reveals just how carefully Brecht realized his vision of a politicized, interventionist theatre. What emerges is a nuanced understanding of Brecht's concepts, his work with actors and his approaches to directing. The reader is encouraged to engage with his method which sought to 'make theatre politically', in order to appreciate the innovations he introduced into his stagecraft. Barnett provides many examples of how Brecht's ideas can be staged, and the final chapter takes a closer look at two very different plays: one written by Brecht and one by a playwright with no acknowledged connection to Brecht. Through an interrogation of The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui and Patrick Marber's Closer, Barnett asks how a Brechtian approach can enliven and illuminate production.
Acknowledgements One: Revealing the Radical Theorist Two: The Messingkauf as Performative Thinking Three: Brecht and Difference Four: Method Trumps Means Five: Brecht and the Actor Six: Brecht and the Director Seven: Brecht, Documentation and the Art of Copying Eight: Brecht's Method in Action: The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui and Closer by Patrick Marber Epilogue Endnotes Index