She states, near the end of her review, that "Elizabethan language under the best of circumstances presents a challenge for everyone but the college professors who teach it." "Elizabethan language" is English. Shakespearean English is merely poetry, not some exotic, indecipherable tongue. As a non-college professor, I invite anyone who is thinking of seeing a Shakespearean production to pick up a copy of the play beforehand to read it through. Lovers of classical music often do the same with musical scores, studying them in advance so as to better enjoy and appreciate the delightful complexities of a work. However, if the thought of reading a play before seeing it is disagreeable or impractical, it is still possible to rise to the "challenge" by reading the synopsis of the play in the program and by attentively following the action. Physical action alone can convey a story to even a younger person (my ten-year old friend, Courtney, not only understood the plot of As You Like It but was able to recount it to me in detail--with no coaching--after seeing the play a couple of weeks ago). Shakespeare's plots are fairly broadly wrought, and key ideas are stated several times, so if one meets the actors halfway, one misses nothing of import.
Perhaps Mason should stick to the air-conditioned comfort of a movie theater, where she'd also find the common, understandable language nicely amplified and Dolby-ized. Leave CSF to those who know what to expect and who look forward to the pleasures of an evening of wine and cheese on the grass, chamber music, fresh air, exquisite language, a tale well-told and the gods' caprices.
I was on vacation when the July 12 issue came out with the "No Alternative" article by John Jesitus. No doubt I missed a good one, judging by the letters.
I have had to resort to "radio surfing." I have been a faithful KBCO listener the past twelve years, but they seem to be suffering the severest case of overplay. I have my radio on during all of my eight-hour tour, and I can hear the same songs twice, sometimes more, in that time. I find it hard to believe they only have five CDs in their collection. Occasionally they have moments of brilliance, but the rest is gag/puke. They are calling themselves "Progressive Rock"; I think they would do better to regress.
Are You on the Bus?
Regarding Richard Becker's letter in the July 12 issue:
Mr. Becker, you're preachin' to the choir on that one. I couldn't agree with you more. How do you think I get so much time to read? A trip with RTD means interminable waiting, lots of walking and, as you say, impossible downtown connections. A ten-minute hop by car can take two or three hours by bus.
RTD works for those who live by routes that are convenient and who can schedule around them. "Running around doing errands" is a nightmare. Outlying areas do not connect with each other, and late-night travel is hopeless. The idea of "just grabbing a bus" is maybe for Mexico City, Amsterdam or Barcelona, but not Denver. Or many other U.S. cities. Just try being without a car in L.A. Talk about Worst-Case Scenarios!
Mass transit simply doesn't sit well with the American ego. It smacks of socialism, planned societies, a lower standard of living. And don't look for any new routes just yet. The House Appropriations Committee is sending a bill to the floor this month that would cut $618 million from mass-transit aid to cities while increasing highway spending by $840 million. That really says it all, Mr. Becker, and you're probably right--I'll have to face it. Stopping the spread of parking-lot cancer is just an academic, utopian fantasy.