James Loehlin’s Book "Chekhov: The Cherry Orchard" Wins a 2008 Robert W. Hamilton Award
Posted: November 3, 2008
James Loehlin’s book Chekhov: The Cherry Orchard, published by Cambridge University Press, was one of the winners at the 2008 Robert W. Hamilton Awards, which are among the highest honors of literary achievement given to published authors at The University of Texas. Loehlin, who is the Shakespeare at Winedale Regents Professor of English, won one of four $3000 runner-up prizes at the annual awards dinner at the Four Seasons Hotel on October 22. The Hamilton awards are sponsored by the University Co-op. This year there were 84 nominees; the grand prize went to Denise Schmandt-Besserat, professor emerita in the departments of Art and Art History and Middle Eastern Studies.
Loehlin’s book traces the performance history of one of the landmark plays of the modern theatre, Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard. Loehlin covers the history of the play from its premiere at the Moscow Art Theatre in 1904 through a century of productions around the world. ‘The chronology is fascinating in its scope and variety,’ according to Sharon Carnicke, one of the leading scholars of Chekhov’s theatre, in a review in the journal Modern Drama. ‘Loehlin's study of The Cherry Orchard is a valuable contribution to the field,’ Carnicke writes, calling the book ‘a valuable resource for scholars of drama and theatre who seek to understand the play's long appeal.’
Loehlin teaches Shakespeare and modern drama courses in the English department and is Director of the Shakespeare at Winedale program. Some of the material in the book was developed when he directed The Cherry Orchard with students as part of an English Department course, Modern Drama in Performance.