Suggested Reading List

CORE READING LIST FOR THEATRE STUDIES MAJORS 

What follows is a suggested list of plays and theatre texts which a literate theatre major should be familiar with by the time they graduate. The list includes plays that are representative of significant dramaturgies, which exemplify the historical and cultural variety of dramatic literature, and which will provide a basis for further reading in these periods and cultures. 

           

 PLAYS

 

CLASSICAL DRAMA (GREEK AND ROMAN)

             Aeschylus

The Oresteia

             Sophocles

                        Oedipus Rex
                       Antigone
                      
Oedipus at Colonus

             Euripides

                        The Bacchae
                       
Medea

             Aristophanes

                        Lysistrata
                       
The Birds

             Plautus

                        The Twin Menaechmi

             Seneca

                        Thyestes

 

 DRAMA OF EASTERN CULTURES

             Indian Hindu epic

                        The Mahabharata (see also:  Peter Brook film of the same)

             Guan Hanqing (Chinese Zaju play)

                        Snow in Midsummer

             Namiki Sosuke (Japanese Kabuki play)

                        The Chronicle of the Battle of Ichinotani

             Author Unknown (Japanese Noh play) 

                        Dojoji

 MEDIEVAL DRAMA

             Anonymous

                        Everyman
                       T
he Second Sheperd’s Play (Wakefield Cycle)

 

 ITALIAN COMMEDIA DELL’ARTE

   Niccolo Machiavelli

                        The Mandrake

 

 ELIZABETHAN AND JACOBEAN DRAMA

             Christopher Marlowe

                        Doctor Faustus

             William Shakespeare

                        Henry IV, Part I
                       
As You Like It
                        
King Lear
                       
The Tempest
                        Much Ado About Nothing
                       A
Midsummer Nights’ Dream
                       Macbeth
                       H
amlet
                       Othello
                      T
he Winter’s Tale
                      Twelfth Night
                      Richard III
                     The Taming of the Shrew

             Ben Jonson

                        Volpone

             John Webster

                        The Duchess of Malfi

  

SPANISH GOLDEN AGE DRAMA

             Lope de Vega

                        Fuente Ovejuna

             Pedro Calderon de la Barca

                        Life is a Dream

             Sor Juan Ines de la Cruz (Mexico)

                        El Divino Narciso

 FRENCH NEO-CLASSICAL

        Jean Baptiste Poquelin Moliere

                        Tartuffe
                       The Misanthrope
                      T
he Imaginary Invalid

             Jean Racine

                        Phaedra

 

 RESTORATION AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURY ANGLO-EUROPEAN

             John Dryden

                        All for Love

             Aphra Behn

                        The Rover

             William Wycherley

                        The Country Wife

             William Congreve

                        The Way of the World

             Carlo Goldoni

                        Servant of Two Masters

             Pierre de Beaumarchais

                        The Marriage of Figaro

             Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

                        Faust, Part I

             Richard Brinsley Sheridan

                        School for Scandal
                      
The Rivals

  

MODERN ANGLO-EUROPEAN DRAMA

             Georg Buchner

                        Woyzeck

             Henrik Ibsen

                        A Doll’s House
                      
Hedda Gabler
                      
An Enemy of the People
                      
The Master Builder

              August Strindberg

                        Miss Julie
                      
A Dream Play

             Oscar Wilde

                        The Importance of Being Earnest
                        Salom
e

             George Bernard Shaw

                        St. Joan
                       Ar
ms and the Man 
                       Major Barbara
                       Heartbreak House

             Anton Chekhov

                        The Cherry Orchard
                        T
he Seagull
                        The Three Sisters
                        Uncle Vanya

             Georges Feydeau

                        A Flea in Her Ear

             Luigi Pirandello

                        Six Characters in Search of an Author

             Edmond Rostand

                        Cyrano de Bergerac

             J.M. Synge

                        The Playboy of the Western World
                        Riders to the Sea

             Alfred Jarry

                        Ubu Roi

             Sean O’Casey

                        Juno and the Peacock
                        The Plough and the Stars

             Bertolt Brecht

                        Mother Courage
                        T
he Good Person of Setzuan
                       The Caucasian Chalk Circle

             Frederico Garcia Lorca

                        Blood Wedding
                       Yerma
                       The House of Bernarda Alba

              Samuel Beckett

                        Waiting for Godot
                        Endgame

             Jean-Paul Sartre

                        No Exit

             Jean Genet

                        The Balcony
                        The Maids

             Eugene Ionesco

                        Rhinoceros
                        The Chairs
                       The Bald Soprano                               

             Peter Weiss

                        Marat/Sade

             Friedrich Durrenmatt

                        The Visit

            Peter Schaffer

                        Equus
                       Amadeus

             John Osborne

                        Look Back in Anger

             Dario Fo

                        Accidental Death of an Anarchist
                        We Won’t Pay!  We Won’t Pay!

             Harold Pinter

                        The Birthday Party
                        T
he Caretaker
                        The Homecoming
                        Betrayal

Tom Stoppard

                        Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead
                        Arcadia

             Caryl Churchill

                        Top Girls
                        Cloud Nine

             Joe Orton

                        Loot
                       What the Butler Saw

             Edward Bond

                        Saved

             Martin McDonagh

                        The Beauty Queen of Leenane
                        The Pillowman

 

MODERN DRAMA OF AFRICAN CULTURES

             Athol Fugard

                        Master Harold and the Boys
                        T
he Road to Mecca

Wole Soyinka

                        Death and the King’s Horseman

 

 MODERN DRAMA OF AMERICAN CULTURES

             Susan Glaspell

                        Trifles

             Eugene O’Neill

                        The Hairy Ape
                        Emperor Jones
                        Long Day’s Journey into Night

             Sophie Treadwell

                        Machinal

             Thornton Wilder

                        The Skin of our Teeth
                        Our Town

             Lillian Hellman

                        The Children’s Hour
                        The Little Foxes

             Clifford Odets

                        Waiting for Lefty
                        Awake and Sing!

             Tennessee Williams

                        The Glass Menagerie
                        A Streetcar Named Desire
                        Cat on a Hot Tin Roof

             Arthur Miller

                        All My Sons
                        Death of a Salesman
                        T
he Crucible

             Edward Albee

                        The Zoo Story
                        Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf
                        Three Tall Wome

          Lorraine Hansberry

                       A Raisin in the Sun

   Maria Irene Fornes

                 Fefu and Her Friends

          I.A. Baraka (LeRoi Jones)

                        Dutchman

             Luis Valdez

                        Zoot Suit

             Sam Shepard

                        Curse of the Starving Class
                        Buried Child
                        True West

            August Wilson

                        Fences
                       Joe Turner’s Come and Gone
                       T
he Piano Lesson

             Marsha Norman

                        Getting Out
                         ‘night Mother

            David Mamet

                        American Buffalo
                        Glengarry Glen Ross
                        Oleanna

             Anna Deavere Smith

                        Fires in the Mirror

             Paula Vogel

                        How I Learned to Drive
                        Baltimore Waltz

             Milcha Sanchez Scott

                        Roosters

             Holly Hughes, Peggy Shaw and Lois Weaver

                        Dress Suits for Hire

             Tony Kushner

                        Angels in America

             Henry David Hwang

                        FOB

                        M. Butterfly

             Naomi Wallace

                        Slaughter City
                        One Flea Spare

             Susan – Lori Parks

                        Venus
                        Top dog / Underdog
                        T
he American Play

 

TEXTS*

         Robert Edmond Jones

              The Dramatic Imagination

          Aristotle

              Poetics

          Jersy Grotowski

             Towards a Poor Theatre

          Bertolt Brecht (Willet ed.)

             Brecht on Theatre

          Laura Bohannon

             Shakespeare in the Bush

          David Ball

             Backwards and Forwards

           Augusto Boal

             Theater of the Oppressed

           Eric Bentley

              The Life of the Drama

            Peter Brook

              The Empty Space

           Joseph Chaikin

              The Presence of the Actor

            Antonin Artaud

               The Theatre and Its Double

           Richard Gilman

               The Making of Modern Drama

           Konstantin Stanislavski

               An Actor Prepares

 

 

*in addition to those texts you will encounter in Theatre coursework