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Read an Oscar Wilde Play

Home > Adelaide > Fun Things To Do | Free
by Michaelie Clark (subscribe)
Pun-loving freelance writer based in Victoria.
Published July 23rd 2011
As an infamous purveyor of parody and wit, Oscar Wilde both titillated and derided his Victorian audiences with his well-known collection of plays, which still provide entertainment to anyone with a penchant for ironic incongruity in the here and now.



So, if life seems all too serious of late, take some time out to read or rediscover one of these theatrical classics:

The Importance of Being Earnest
A tale of social satire, the most popular of Wilde's plays pokes fun at the fundamental institutions of his contemporaries' culture, with a case of duel identities that goes awry.
"I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train."

Lady Windermere's Fan
A series of misunderstandings and misadventures posed with Wilde's sardonic sense of humour manage to make a mockery of the era's moral positioning.
"History is merely gossip. But scandal is gossip made tedious by morality."

A Woman of No Importance
Not a play known for its strength of narrative, it nevertheless has plenty of choice witticisms to be found in the dialogue of the Wilde's well-to-do characters.
"One should never trust a woman who tells one her real age. A woman who would tell one that, would tell one anything."

An Ideal Husband
Revenge and blackmail are cast with hilarity and more than a touch of ironic observation in this play about honour, avarice and public perception.
"I don't mind bad husbands. I've had two. They amused me immensely."
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Why? The need for silliness should be taken seriously.
When: Anytime
Where: Anywhere
Cost: Free from your bookshelf or local library
Comments
Thankyou. That comment made me feel better. The one about the husbands.

I just read Death of a Salesman. It was a terribly sad story.

Absolutely beautiful quotes. Thankyou. I agree with all.
By Jody Kimber - senior reviewer
Monday, 25th of July @ 05:37 am
I just love Oscar Wilde. Witty stories, artfully constructed and some of the funniest quotes in the lexicon. I'm also a fan of his short stories - Lord Arthur Saville's Crime is laugh-out-loud funny, and I appreciate his more serious side, especially the parables The Selfish Giant and The Happy Prince. I just read the Ballad of Reading Gaol - scary and thought-provoking. Definitely one of my favourite authors.
By Geraldine Massey - senior reviewer
Monday, 8th of August @ 10:22 am
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