Monday, November 7, 2016

Ulysses on Ice


so we should try making them explicit
magnifying them into skaters, dancing...

(also: exiles on ice
already minutely choreographed by joyce in stage directions,
dubliners on ice)

i was thinking first just of a ballet
(and an ice ballet could always be trimmed of its ice
if you just can't take it seriously)

ep1 is revealed mostly as a brother-duet
with buck leading and challenging and stephen quietly following

stephen eventually asking for a brotherly commitment

buck peaks with his entrance
a flurry of grandiose pantomimes of male roles

(stephen will get a glorious extended solo later, in proteus on ice)

different modalities might be conveyed with colored spotlights

buck first mimes a self-serious priest
then he mimes stephen as a fearful, jejune jesuit (holding up his jupes to flee? cf Stephen Hero ch18 "holding their soutanes up as women do with their skirts when they cross a muddy street")
then a series of grandiose flourishes
skating circles around barely-moving stephen
(as buck starts to shave as well)

stephen is fearful, displeased and sleepy because haines had a noisy nightmare
stephen must mime haines and himself, and also mime brave buck
and he at first demands buck choose


buck suddenly halts and accuses stephen of killing his mother
buck skates off smugly as stephen secretly writhes
stephen then resumes the duet
buck continues challenging stephen's sanity, then catches himself
reverses direction
praises stephen
complains stephen distrusts him
offers to give haines a ragging
asks what's real problem
dramatic pause
stephen takes tentative lead, buck follows warily
stephen recalls overhearing buck's heartless phrase

(stephen wishes for a brotherbond
where buck would play protector of his heart)

but buck flees
mounts defense
stephen parries
buck departs with nonapology

stephen's sad solo turns nightmarish

buck returns

kitchen cooking and banter
milkwoman slow but sure

bloom's kitchen duet with (skating) cat
like chaplin on rollerskates

bloom timidly stalks oblivious neighbor girl
bloom busily circles reclining molly

hades on ice: foursome with two skating backwards

scylla: competent librarians hector brilliant stephen like birds of prey

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