Peter Brook

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Peter Brook
Peter Stephen Paul Brook
BirthplaceChiswick, west London

Brook, Peter,

1925–, English theatrical director, b. London, grad. Oxford (1943). An innovative, unconventional, and controversial figure, Brook mounts energetic productions in which the entire stage is utilized and realistic sets are banished in favor of bold, abstract, and austere settings. His approach is extremely physical, and he often has his actors sing, play musical instruments, and perform acrobatics. After apprenticing in various repertory companies, he began his long association with what became (1961) the Royal Shakespeare CompanyRoyal Shakespeare Company
(RSC), a British repertory theater. The company, established in 1960, was based on the earlier Shakespeare Memorial Theatre at Stratford-upon-Avon. It is a national theater supported by government funds.
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 with his production of Love's Labour's Lost (1946). Subsequent Shakespearean productions included Measure for Measure (1950), Titus Andronicus (1955), King Lear (1962), and A Midsummer Night's Dream (1970), which was set in a kind of adult playground with trapezes, stilts, and spinning plates. Other Brook productions for the Royal Shakespeare Company included his staging of Peter WeissWeiss, Peter
, 1916–82, German-Swedish dramatist, novelist, film director, and painter. Weiss's early novels Abschied von den Eltern (1961; tr. Leavetaking, 1962) and Fluchtpunkt (1962; tr.
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's Marat/Sade (1964, Tony Award for best director), a play within a play set in the insane asylum housing the Marquis de Sade that examines both revolution and madness, and US (1966), an attack on U.S. involvement in Vietnam. During the 1960s, Brook's productions were influenced both by the shock tactics of Antonin ArtaudArtaud, Antonin
, 1896–1948, French poet, actor, and director. During the 1920s and 30s he was associated with various experimental theater groups in Paris, and he cofounded the Théâtre Alfred Jarry.
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 and the analytical detachment of Bertolt BrechtBrecht, Bertolt
, 1898–1956, German dramatist and poet, b. Eugen Berthold Friedrich Brecht. His brilliant wit, his outspoken Marxism, and his revolutionary experiments in the theater made Brecht a vital and controversial force in modern drama.
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Brook has also directed films, such as Moderato Cantabile (1960), Lord of the Flies (1963), and King Lear (1971); and operas, such as Faust and Eugene Onegin. In the 1970s, he founded the International Center of Theatre Research in Paris, an assembly of actors, dancers, musicians, and other performers of many nationalities. Their most recognized achievement was a nine-hour presentation of the Indian epic The Mahabharata (1985). Since then Brook has created a variety of other theatrical works, including a version of Oliver SacksSacks, Oliver Wolf,
1933–2015, British neurologist and author, b. London, educated at Queen's College, Oxford. In 1960 he moved to the United States, where he continued his medical training.
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's The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat (1994); a production of Mozart's Don Giovanni (1998); a streamlined Hamlet (2000); Tierno Bokar (2005), a theater piece based on the life of a West African Sufi in the 1930s; and The Grand Inquisitor, a parable adapted from Dostoyevsky (2006). His books on the theater include Empty Space (1969), The Shifting Point (1987), and The Open Door (1995).


See his The Open Door (1993) and his autobiographical Threads of Time (1998); Gregory Boyd, ed., Between Two Silences: Talking with Peter Brook (1999), M. Croyden, Conversations with Peter Brook (2003); biographies by J. C. Trewin (1971), A. Hunt and G. Reeves (1995), and M. Kustow (2005); studies by D. Williams (1988), R. Helfer and G. Loney, ed. (1998), and A. Todd and J.-G. Lecat (2003).

Brook, Peter


Born Mar. 21, 1925, in London. English director.

Brook studied at Oxford University. In 1943 he began his career as a director in London. From 1943 to 1946 he worked at several theaters, including the Birmingham Repertory Theatre. From 1945 to 1965 he put on Shakespeare’s plays at the Memorial Theatre (Stratford-on-Avon). Brook has worked at dramatic theaters in London and Paris, and he has directed operas at Covent Garden (London) and the Metropolitan Opera (New York). Since 1962 he has been one of the directors of the Royal Shakespeare Theatre. Brook’s productions of Hamlet (1955) and King Lear (1964) were put on in Moscow. His other productions include Shakespeare’s plays Measure for Measure (1950), The Winter’s Tale (1951), and Titus Andronicus (1955) and The Persecution and Murder of Marat … (Royal Shakespeare Theatre, London, 1964). Brook also produced the political revue US, about the war in Vietnam (Royal Shakespeare Theatre, 1966; Brook is one of its authors). Gogol’s The Inspector General (Oldwich Theatre, London, 1966) and Seneca’s Oedipus (National Theatre, 1968) are also among his productions. Brook has made several films.


The Empty Space. London, 1968.


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A MAJOR new exhibition of paintings by the late Brighouse artist Peter Brook is now on at the Harrison Lord Gallery in Brighouse.
Un poema epico, un libro sagrado, una historia de tribus en guerra con simbolos trascendentales sobre la vida y la muerte para la cultura hindu, es lo que el Mahabarata nos muestra y que Peter Brook tradujo a la escena hace mas de treinta anos.
To help stage actors refine their performances, Peter Brook has created an exercise dubbed "The Tightrope", and refined it over decades of use.
Peter Brook directed his first play in 1943 and rose to prominence at the Royal Shakespeare Company as a director in the 1950s and 1960s, working with John Gielgud, and eventually delivering the ground-breaking production of A Midsummer Night's Dream in Stratford-upon-Avon in 1970.
Brown was firmly in second place behind Peter Brook after the cycle stage of the race but he managed to regain his title with his run up and down the mountain in 56 minutes.
PETER BROOK successfully defended his title in the 2012 Snowdonia Slateman triathlon.
INTERPRETATIONS The play 11 & 12 is based on events in Mali decades ago when a massacre, which changed the Muslim community forever, was sparked by a disagreement about whether a certain prayer should be recited 11 or 12 times VENERABLE Peter Brook has had an illustrious career RELIGIOUS DIFFERENCES One of the actors from Peter Brook's play 11 and 12
Peter Brook has been parting the thickets of Eastern mysticism for so long, it's a bit disconcerting to see the great guru turn his attention to Christian existentialism, in the form of this stark rendering of "The Grand Inquisitor" passage from Dostoyevsky's "The Karamazov.
Peter Brook appeared on the Channel 5 programme with ex-Home Secretary David Blunkett to warn wayward youths of the perils of crime.
This is no surprise given the time Khan spent performing with Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker and Peter Brook, in addition to his traditional kathak training.
Partner Peter Brook said that internet entrepreneurs could buy up the same name, adding: "After the April 6 deadline, it's basically open season.