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How Many Frankenstein Plays Exist?

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There are no less than nine theatrical productions of Frankenstein. The first one by Richard Brinsley Peake was named Presumption, or the Fate of Frankenstein. It debuted in 1823. In 2011, the National Theater presented its version of Frankenstein. Benedict Cumberbatch played the leading role. The actor is known for the Sherlock BBC series.

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Frankenstein was written in the cold, rainy summer of 1818. The plot became popular and was adapted many times. The first adaptation debuted in 1823. Then, in 1826, Henry Milner directed The Man and The Monster, or The Fate of Frankenstein. In 1887, Richard Henry wrote a musical burlesque Frankenstein or The Vampire’s Victim.

A century later, in 1972, Sally Netzel wrote a comedic stage adaptation. It was called Frankenstein’s Monster. The presentation took place on the Dallas Theater Center stage. In 1981, Victor Gialanella made a failed Broadway adaptation. It was performed only once. In 2006 Mark Baron composed the Frankenstein – A New Musical based on an adaptation by Gary Cohen. In 2016 a full-length ballet production Frankenstein by Liam Scarlett was streamed worldwide.

In March 2011, the National Theater in London presented a stage version of Frankenstein that ran until May. The play was starring Jonny Lee Miller as the Creature and Benedict Cumberbatch as Victor Frankenstein. The story was presented from the Creature’s point of view. The prehistory was omitted, and the play broke off with the “birth” of the Creature. It was broadcasted worldwide on 17 March as part of the National Theater Live program. More than 800,000 people watched the production in cinemas in 2012-2014. In 2018, the play was shown in the US cinemas to celebrate the novel’s 200th anniversary.

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IvyPanda. (2020) 'How Many Frankenstein Plays Exist'. 19 October.

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