Main Entry: thau·ma·turg
Etymology: French, from New Latin thaumaturgus, from Greek thaumatourgos working miracles, from thaumat-, thauma miracle + ergon work — more at Theater, Work
The official blog of the Dramaturgy Department at Baltimore's CENTERSTAGE. For posts related to our current and upcoming shows, click the links to the right. Alternatively, you could begin at the beginning, and explore our posts in chronological order.
by Jon Seder - April 20, 2012
I like words. I like fat buttery words, such as ooze, turpitude, glutinous, toady. I like solemn, angular, creaky words, such as straitlaced, cantankerous, pecunious, valedictory. I like spurious, black-is-white words, such as mortician, liquidate, tonsorial, demi-monde. I like suave “V” words, such as Svengali, svelte, bravura, verve. I like crunchy, brittle, crackly words, such as splinter, grapple, jostle, crusty. I like sullen, crabbed, scowling words, such as skulk, glower, scabby, churl. I like Oh-Heavens, my-gracious, land’s-sake words, such as tricksy, tucker, genteel, horrid. I like elegant, flowery words, such as estivate, peregrinate, elysium, halcyon. I like wormy, squirmy, mealy words, such as crawl, blubber, squeal, drip. I like sniggly, chuckling words, such as cowlick, gurgle, bubble and burp.
I like the word screenwriter better than copywriter, so I decided to quit my job in a New York advertising agency and try my luck in Hollywood, but before taking the plunge I went to Europe for a year of study, contemplation and horsing around.
I have just returned and I still like words.
May I have a few with you?
385 Madison Avenue
My new favorite job application letter, from 1934. He ended up winning an Oscar for screenwriting!
(via Letters of Note)
We like words too.
ah, if Johnson and Boswell were alive to see this one….
The Largest List of Text Message Shorthand (IM, SMS) and Internet Acronyms Found on the Web - kept current and up-to-date by NetLingo The Internet Dictionary: Online Dictionary of Computer and Internet Terms, Acronyms, Text Messaging, Smileys ;-)
A few little challenges that arose lately, either because words have shifted their meaning in the centuries since Ford wrote ‘Tis Pity or because hearing them out loud just brings up other associations than seeing them on the page. In at least one case, I’m betting that doubleness is intended by the playwright (sneaky fella) but it’s harder to pick up these days. Or so it would seem.
1) Annabella tells her brother/lover (did I just give something away again?) that in his face she sees “Distraction.” Well, she’s not complaining that he’s not paying her enough attention; as Ophelia says about Hamlet, she’s saying he looks wild and crazy, and not in a good way. So, what to do. Take a stab, anyone following along at home (d’oh, did I really just let myself say “Take a stab” about this play? Wow.).
2) Same girl, different moment. She’s talking to herself, as it would seem so many did back in those days (and some things never change; I feel as if my little asides here might be pretty much the virtual equivalent) and says she’s written a letter with lines “charactered in guilt.” Nice little pun on guilt/gilt, but it’s hard to pick up and can seem misleading….
3) Vasques, the lone Spaniard in this playload of Italians, tells the “lusty widow” Hippolita (really, that’s what they call her in the play, I’m not just saying that because of how she acts; the title has nothing to do with her!) that he thinks she might have been a little too “shrewd” with his master. And he’s not aiming compliments there, in honor of her savvy—though he ought to. Instead, he’s using an old word for “shrewish,” which hardly seems a nice thing to say when he’s buttering her up. But how many of us are going to hear “shrewd” and think anything but “clever, wily, savvy, ingenious” these days? Don’t all raise your hands at once (it makes typing hard).
So, more textual tinkering has ensued. The results onstage here in the Pearlstone Theater at 700 N. Calvert starting March 11th.