Performing Medieval Narrative Today

A Video Showcase

Aucassin: Group performance

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About the scene and clip:
This set of clips comes from a group performance of Aucassin et Nicolette at the Maison Française in December 2004.

About the work:
Aucassin and Nicolette: This charming work, composed by an anonymous poet around 1200, is the only surviving example of the “chantefable”: it is partly in prose, to be spoken; partly in verse, with assonanced lines of 7-syllables, to be sung. Aucassin and Nicolette reflects a thorough-going familiarity with the genres of the period, such as epic, romance, saint’s life, and lyric song–and a light-hearted parodic attitude toward them all.

About the genre:
See “About the work” (above).

About the edition/translation:
Abridged from Aucassin and Nicolette and Other Medieval Romances and Tales, trans. Eugene Mason, New York, Dutton, 1958. Original text: Aucassin et Nicolette, ed./[Modern French] trans. Jean Dufournet, Paris, Garnier-Flammarion, 1973.

About the performer/ensemble:
All performers are students at New York University. Ryan Bates (CAP 21 Studio, Tisch School of the Arts), Elyse Beyer (The Stella Adler Studio of Acting, Tisch School of the Arts), Giancarla Boyle (CAP 21 Studio, Tisch School of the Arts), Eric Giancola (CAP 21 Studio, Tisch School of the Arts), Leah Johnston (CAP 21 Studio, Tisch School of the Arts), Jenni Login (College of Arts and Science, English/Religious Studies), Cristin Milioti (CAP 21 Studio, Tisch School of the Arts), Katherine Nguyen (College of Arts and Science Journalism) , Dave Perlow (CAP 21 Studio, Tisch School of the Arts), Sean Roschman (Playwrights Horizons Theater School, Tisch School of the Arts), Nick Spangler (CAP 21 Studio, Tisch School of the Arts).

About the production:
This performance was created for the course “Acting Medieval Literature,” taught by Prof. Timmie (E.B.) Vitz at New York University in fall 2004. It took place in a private performance held at the Maison Française in December 2004, and was videoed by Tess Steinkolk.