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剧院关门,还能写诗:就像当年莎士比亚那样

疫情之下,美国的戏剧圣地百老汇全面关门,对于纽约的戏剧圈而言,似乎一下子没有了精神食粮。但是,艺术家们在隔离中还有别的事可以做。今天的文章,就提到了一个典故:16世纪的伦敦发生瘟疫时,剧院关了门,莎士比亚写起了诗歌,并创作了一些传世名句。这位作者说,现在隔离中的戏剧演员,也可以。这篇文章是一篇有文学色彩和个性化的文艺评论,阅读体验与平时的严肃新闻略有不同。

剧院关门,还能写诗:就像当年莎士比亚那样

Broadway Is Closed. Write Poems Instead.

百老汇虽然关闭,但你可以写写诗

The theater community is reeling from Thursday’s announcement of a shutdown of Broadway theaters through April 12, a public health measure to protect audiences from possible coronavirus transmission.

周四,纽约百老汇剧院宣布将关闭至4月12日。这项意在保护观众免受新冠病毒传播影响的公共卫生措施,让戏剧圈颇为震惊。

One commodity the theater has that film and television do not have is air. Air is that wonderful substance that denotes presence. It creates that magical backstage dust we inhale together. It is also the substance through which people cough, sneeze and infect one another.

剧院看戏的一大价值是“空气”,这是在家看电影或电视节目所体验不到的。空气是一种能够显示存在感的奇妙物质,人们一起吸入它在后台创造的魔力灰尘;同时,人们也通过这一物质咳嗽、打喷嚏,并相互传染病毒。

How can we be responsible to our audiences, and also go about our business, which involves bodies in proximity to one another?

我们怎样才能既对观众负责,又维持这项涉及身体间近距离接触的业务运转呢?

During the 1590s plague, when the theaters were shut, William Shakespeare apparently chose to write poems instead. From his “Venus and Adonis,” penned while the playhouses were closed and writers were essentially quarantined, came this somewhat strange compliment: “The plague is banished by thy breath.”

在1590年代这个瘟疫流行、剧院悉数关闭的时期,威廉•莎士比亚显然选择了去写诗。《维纳斯和阿多尼斯》就是在剧场关闭、剧作家们基本隔离的情况下写成的,莎士比亚在这部作品里颇不寻常地赞美道:“瘟疫被你的呼吸驱散了。”

The theater has survived a plague before, not only in the 1600s, but also in the 1980s. And the theater, with its tender heroism, empathy and propensity to help others, will survive again.

戏剧曾先后在17世纪和20世纪80年代历经瘟疫的洗礼,但它都存活了下来。而这一次,带着温柔的英雄主义、共情力和助人的意愿,戏剧将再次幸免于难。

As we wait out the reopening of our theaters this spring, we might try amateur theatricals at home, living room readings, podcasts of theater and writing plays in solitude. And on April 13th, only 10 days before Shakespeare’s birthday, return to the theater — where we are reminded, in joy and in tragedy, of how interconnected we all are.

在等待今春剧院重新开放的同时,我们可以在家中尝试业余戏剧表演、在客厅阅读剧本、在播客上听剧,或是独自写写剧本。待到4月13日,也就是距离莎士比亚诞辰只有10天之际,我们就能回归剧院——在那里,无论悲欢喜乐,我们都会牢牢记住,我们紧紧相连。

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