Shakespeare in the Spanish Theatre offers an account of Shakespeare's presence on the Spanish stage, from a production of the first Spanish rendering of Jean-François Ducis's Hamlet in 1772 to the creative and controversial work of directors like Calixto Bieito and Alex Rigola in the early 21st century. Despite a largely indirect entrance into the culture, Shakespeare has gone on to become the best and known and most widely performed of all foreign playwrights. What is more, by the end of the 20th and beginning of the 21st century there have been more productions of Shakespeare than of all of Spain's major Golden Age dramatists put together.
This book explores and explains this spectacular rise to prominence and offers a timely overview of Shakespeare's place in Spain's complex and vibrant culture.
...Gregor provides an admirable focus on the diverse histories of Shakespeare's plays on Spanish stages...
"How, in a country like Spain, boasting a stage tradition including theatrical giants like Tirso de Molina, Lope de Vega and Calderon, could Shakespeare steal the limelight in the late 18th century and hold on to it to the present day? Gregor admirably maps the history of this Spanish brand of Shakespearemania in Madrid and the provinces. His impressive account of the shift from a traditional to an ever more experimental Shakespeare involves translations and productions, as well as playhouse architecture and audience tastes. Significantly, this 'addiction' was a European affair, fed mainly by English, French and German traditions, by Napoleonic and fascist cultures as much as the RSC and the BBC." - Professor Ton Hoenselaars, Utrecht University, The Netherlands
'Keith Gregor packs a lot into under 160 pages, setting 240 years of a developing taste for Shakespeare, and the changing uses of his plays and responses to them, against a broad background of Spain's evolving theatrical world... there is now a varied tradition, a popular context, a two-century history for Shakespeare productions in Spain, and it is this history that Keith Gregor has evoked so meticulously and effectively in this book.' Around the Globe