A Modern and Critical Edition- Edited by Jaime Cruz-Ortiz
Notes on the Staging of Jacinto Cordeiro’s El juramento ante Dios, y lealtad contra el amor
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NOTES ON THE STAGING
of Jacinto Cordeiro’s El juramento ante Dios, y lealtad contra el amor76
There are no historical accounts of an actual performance of Cordeiro’s El juramento ante Dios, y lealtad contra el amor, but evidence does show that its popularity lasted several centuries. Although it was written sometime in the 1620s,77 the proliferation of editions a hundred years later tells us that Juramento reached the height of its popularity in the mid-eighteenth century. Extant sueltas bear witness to performances in Barcelona, Madrid, Salamanca, Seville, and Valencia. These date from 1652 to 1822. Still, it appears that all but three were published in the eighteenth century. Additionally, Andioc and Coulon’s Cartelera teatral madrileña del siglo XVIII (1708-1808) records a performance on May 25th, 1746, in Madrid’s Teatro del Príncipe. The suelta sold after this performance, published by Antonio Sanz, also survives.78
Although we know a lot about when and where Cordeiro’s most successful play was staged, we know very little about how. Juramento has not been performed in some 200 years. Consequently, critics do not have the benefit of modern stagings as a point of reference. A contemporary production would demonstrate one approach to staging, blocking, costumes, acting, and ← 39 | 40 → props while suggesting the possibility of others. In the absence of both historical records of performances and modern productions, we have to look to the text itself for clues about past and potential performances.
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