Harvard Strindberg Symposium
March 2 - March 3, 2012
On the centennial of Strindberg's death, Harvard University is hosting a two-day symposium of staged readings, expert lectures, an exhibit of rare artifacts, and film screenings that will provide a fresh look at the work of this Swedish playwright, author and artist who changed the course of the modern theatre. The symposium events will take place from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday, March 2 - Saturday, March 3, primarily in Barker Center, 12 Quincy Street on the Harvard campus. All events are free and open to the public, and a complete schedule can be found at http://www.scandinavianstudiesharvard.com/site/Strindberg.html. This symposium is part of an international celebration of Strindberg's work and ongoing influence. In the U.S. alone, Strindberg’s work is featured at six major academic conferences this year and being performed in major U.S. cities from New York to Boston to San Francisco (see http://strindbergfestival.com/). Ture Rangström, the Artistic Director of the historic Strindberg Intimate Theatre in Stockholm, is breaking away from a wildly successful season in Sweden to give the keynote address. He joins a lineup of experts on Strindberg and Scandinavian drama who are coming from around the country and the world to fête an artist whose work has had an indelible impact on many great American playwrights, such as Eugene O’Neill and Edward Albee. One of the symposium’s guest speakers, Professor Eszter Szalczer of SUNY Albany, will discuss Strindberg’s influence on American theatre in her talk, “Strindberg on the American Stage.” “There isn’t enough awareness outside the performance community of just how vital Strindberg’s role has been in shaping modern theatre worldwide. Our goal is to acquaint Bostonians with Strindberg,” said Dr. Ursula Lindqvist, who will be giving an introductory lecture titled “Strindberg 101” for the uninitiated. Several acclaimed local directors will be leading a special theater workshop at the symposium in which they will work through some of their favorite Strindberg scenes from The Father (1887), Miss Julie (1888), The Stronger (1889), Dance of Death (1900) and A Dream Play (1901) with local actors, including students. Robert Brustein, Founding Director of the A.R.T. in Cambridge, and David Krasner, who heads the acting program at Emerson College, will be joined by Rangström in leading this two-hour workshop. The public is invited to attend the workshop as spectators, observing the directors at work with their actors in different parts of the room as a kind of living theater exhibition. The actors will then perform the scenes for the audience at the conclusion of the workshop, followed by a roundtable discussion with the directors, guest speakers, actors, and audience. Each expert lecture will also be preceded by a short performed reading of a Strindberg work that will be featured in the lecture. Several other unique events await those attending the symposium: --A special preview screening of The Stronger, a beautiful dance film adaptation of Strindberg’s play by New York filmmaker and choreographer Gabrielle Lansner (http://www.gabriellelansner.com/film2.html); --An exhibit of rare Strindberg artifacts, including the original manuscript of Lycko-Pers Resa (Lucky Peter’s Journey, 1892), during a Saturday morning coffee hour at Houghton Library; --The premiere of a new translation and adaptation of Strindberg’s Crimes and Crimes (1899) by Cambridge artist Ulrika Brand (firstname.lastname@example.org). Staged readings will be performed at 7:30 p.m. on March 1, 2, 3 and 8, 9, 10 at INVIVIA, 1684 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge. Suggested donation: $12 adults, $6 seniors, students free w/ ID. RSVP to ensure a seat: CrimesandcrimesRSVP@Strindbergfestival.com The symposium is hosted by Harvard’s Scandinavian Program with a generous grant from the Coordinating Committee for Nordic Studies Abroad; it is co-sponsored by the Swedish Institute in Stockholm, Harvard’s Provostial Funds Committee, and the David Rockefeller Center for Latin American Studies at Harvard. A general RSVP to the main symposium events is requested but not required: StrindbergHarvard@gmail.com.