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Cherry Orchard Hardcover – Jan 1 1998


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 84 pages
  • Publisher: Oberon Books; New edition edition (Jan. 1 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1870259750
  • ISBN-13: 978-1870259750
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 13.3 x 20.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 222 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,615,838 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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A room which is still called the nursery. Read the first page
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Michael J. Mazza on Sept. 30 2002
Format: Paperback
Anton Chekhov's play "The Cherry Orchard" has been published as part of the Dover Thrift Edition series (that's the version I read before writing this review). No translator is credited for this edition. According to the note at the start of the book, the play was initially presented by the Moscow Art Theatre in 1904.
The play takes place on the estate of Madame Ranevsky, the matriarch of an aristocratic Russian family that has fallen on financial hard times. She faces the possible loss of her family's magnificent cherry orchard.
The play is populated with interesting characters: Lopakhin, a wealthy neighbor whose father was the serf of Madame Ranevsky's father; Firs, an aged servant who longs for the "old days"; Trophimof, a student with lofty ideas; and more. There is a great deal of conflict among the characters.
"The Cherry Orchard" is about people dealing with very personal conflicts and crises while larger socioeconomic changes are going on around them. The orchard of the title is a memorable image that is well handled by Chekhov. The play contains some really effective dialogue, such as old Firs' reflection on the apparently lost art of making dried cherries. This is definitely one classic play that remains compelling.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By darragh o'donoghue on Nov. 16 2001
Format: Paperback
Too often, 'The Cherry Orchard' moves dangerously close to that dread thing, the Shavian 'comedy' of ideas. full of facile symbolism, a schematic narrative arc and obvious allegorical characterisation, the play seems to groan under the weight of characters pontificating on grave matters such as social and historical change, the 'idea' of Russia and the rhetoric of freedom and progress.
What saves 'Orchard' is the merciful fact that it was written by Chekhov and not Shaw. Whatever his overall conception of the play's weighty themes - the decline of the aristocracy; the new economic power of former serfs etc. - Chekhov is simply incapable of writing mere mouthpieces, and every character, no matter how monstrous, limited, avaricious, delusive or paralysed (in action or mind), is suffused with the kind of life (flawed, egocentric, perhaps, but human) for which he had a unique, sympathetic, though always honestly satirical eye. it is a tough task to make an audience empathise with a group of silly former slave-owners, but death, loss, change, poverty, personal failure and disappointment are things we have all felt, and we would probably be lying if we couldn't find something of ourselves in most of the characters (I, worryingly, found myself most drawn to the snobbish, immature, enndearingly gauche Gaev).
There are too many emotionally loaded, privileged and enigmatic moments for characters to be simply straw targets, and the play is shot through with poignant autobiographical resonances (it was Chekhov's last, written when he was terminally ill).
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Barry D. Smith on May 6 2002
Format: Paperback
The Cherry Orchard was me first experience with Chekhov, and I was surprised at the depth in this 49 page play. By no means would I considered myself a "literary expert," but this was very readable and you can pull a lot of the deeper meanings and its context in Russian history by yourself. I was confused at a couple people who write that the simply couldn't understand it and it put them to sleep! It's not THAT tough! If I could understand and appreciate it, almost anyone can!
What I like most about Chekhov is that he doesn't simplify his characters. He's a realist in this sense. Lopahkin and Trophimof each have admirable and detestable characteristics, just like you and I. While it may be set in the tumultuous period prior to the Russian revolution, the ideas and the discussions this play provokes are timeless.
Highly recommended!
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Format: Paperback
As much as I enjoy Chekhov, I'm not a big fan of THE CHERRY ORCHARD; it never made much sense to me. However, this adaptation by David Mamet makes the play easier to follow and understand. The play itself is often labeled as a tragedy, but really isn't. As Mamet points out in the introduction to this adaptation, the closest form of drama THE CHERRY ORCHARD's structure resembles is the farce. In fact, if all the characters weren't so depressing, the play would be hilarious. Perhaps that is what Chekhov originally intended, that as we would see the outrageous, pitiful existence of the characters in this play we would laugh at their mopping and folly and strive to make our lives more meaningful. This isn't the best work to introduce one to the genius of Chekhov, but it is a classic and if one can get past all the whining (or to use a more pc term "reminiscing") it's worth the read.
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Format: Paperback
Chekhov's 'The Cherry Orchard' is an excellent, layered composition from a notoriously prolific writer. Although good humoured, an air of depression and resignation stalks every moment, as the characters realise they are anachronisms in a rapidly changing capitlist society. Feeling as though it were written by Shakespeare's Hamlet, compelling darkness is portrayed, such as in Yephidov, who carries a revolver with him in case the fleeting notion of suicide becomes too compelling. The genius of such creations is that you are never sure whether the writer means to evince smiles or grimaces.
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