Below is a list of resources to get you and your cast started in exploring the world of The Hunchback of Notre Dame. Consider encouraging your actors and designers to do further research on the topics they are most interested in or that best relate to their characters or roles in the production.
“Catechism of the Catholic Church” : A complete list of the catechisms of the Church compiled by the Vatican.
“The Catholic Encyclopedia” : New Advent, the largest Catholic website in the world, offers the “full and authoritative information on the entire cycle of Catholic interests, action, and doctrine.”
Court of Miracles
“Cours des Miracles” : A short description of the 17th Century Court of Miracles.
Everybody Belongs: Changing Negative Attitudes Toward Classmates with Disabilities: Arthur Shaprio’s book, published by Routledge in 2000, explains how familiar childhood characters like Captain Hook and Porky Pig shape attitudes toward disability. He offers practical guidance to schools that are wrestling with how to integrate children with disabilities.
National Center on Disability and Journalism Disability Style Guide:
This style guide will lead you to the appropriate language to use when discussing disability with your cast.
A Social History of Disability in the Middle Ages: Cultural Considerations of Physical Impairment: This book by Irina Metzler, published by Routledge in 2015, discusses what it was like to be disabled in the Middle Ages.
Stumbling Blocks Before the Blind: Medieval Constructions of a Disability: Edward Wheatley’s book, published by University of Michigan Press in 2010, explores French practices and institutions that led to the commodification of human sight and inhumane satire against the blind in French literature.
The Hunchback of Notre Dame on Stage & Screen
The Art of The Hunchback of Notre Dame: Written by Stephen Rebello and featuring art from the Disney animated film, this 1996 book traces the history of the movie and shines light on the animation process.
“Bells Are Ringing” : Ellen Lampert-Greaux’s 1999 article from Live Design magazine profiles the technical elements of Der Glöckner von Notre Dame.
Stephen Schwartz Comments on Disney’s The Hunchback of Notre Dame : A collection of questions posted on Stephen Schwartz’s online forum about The Hunchback of Notre Dame, with answers by Schwartz.
Notre Dame Cathedral
“The bells, the bells…! Why Notre Dame is ringing the changes” : A succinct history of the bells of Notre Dame from the Independent.
“Facts on the Notre Dame Cathedral in France” : A short history of the cathedral from construction to restoration from USA Today.
“Gravely Gorgeous: Gargoyles, Grotesques & the Nineteenth-Century Imagination” : Part of Cornell University’s architectural photograph collection, this site explores Gothic architecture, including Notre Dame’s gargoyles and chimera.
“New Bells Restore Old Harmony” : An article from Deutsche Welle detailing the replacement of Notre Dame’s bells for its 850th anniversary.
Notre-Dame de Paris : Notre Dame’s official website which includes historical information about the cathedral.
The Victorian Web : An overview, with images, of the architectural work completed during the 1845-1864 restoration of the cathedral.
Paris in the Middle Ages
Paris: The Biography of a City: Colin Jones’s illuminating history, published by Penguin Books in 2006, offers a comprehensive and colorful look at the French capital, including its time during the Middle Ages.
Paris in the Middle Ages: Published by University of Pennsylvania Press in 2009, this book by Simone Roux and translated by Jo Ann McNamara chronicles the lives of Parisians as the city grew from a military stronghold in 1214 to a city recovering from the Black Death of the 1390s.
Women and Power in the Middle Ages: Published by University of Georgia Press in 2004, editor Mary C. Erler compiled a collection of essays that explore the power and activism of medieval women.
The Gypsies: Angus Fraser’s 1995 book, published by Wiley Blackwell, provides an in-depth study of the diaspora and history of Roma in Europe until the end of Communism.
Kopachi.com : Romani author Ronald Lee’s website provides articles about Roma by Romani authors, as well as music, publications, and links to useful other websites.
We Are the Romani People: Written by Romani author and scholar Ian Hancock, this book, published by University of Hertfordshire Press in 2002, offers an excellent introduction on the origin, history, diaspora, language, and customs of the Roma.
Sanctuary and Crime in the Middle Ages: Karl Shoemaker’s book, published by Fordham University Press in 2011, explores sanctuary law’s foundations in late antiquity and emergence in the early Middle Ages.
“What Are Sanctuary Cities?” : This 2017 New York Times article maps jurisdictions in the U.S. that act as “sanctuary cities.”
“What It Was Like to Seek Asylum in Medieval England” : This 2015 Slate article by Eric Grundhauser offers a fascinating and concise history of sanctuary law.
Society of American Fight Directors: The Society of American Fight Directors is an internationally recognized organization dedicated to promoting safety and excellence in the craft of stage combat. Contact your SAFD region representative for training opportunities or hire one of their certified teachers to help design your combat sequences.
The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby: The Royal Shakespeare Company’s legendary 1980 stage production of Charles Dickens’s classic, released on DVD in 2002, is one of the most famous examples of the story theater form.
Paul Sills’ Story Theater: Four Shows: This volume, published by Applause in 2000, includes the chapters “Designing for Story Theater,” “Music Notes for Story Theater,” and “Theater Games for Story Theater” (created by Sills’s mother, Viola Spolin).
“Story Theatre”: This 2015 article by Rosalind Flynn on About.com details the history and conventions of the theater form.
Story Theatre: Another famous example of story theater, this play by Paul Sills with music, published by Samuel French, was adapted from famous fables from the Brothers Grimm and Aesop. The 1970 Broadway production featured a cast of eight actors performing a total of 66 speaking roles, ensemble roles, and sound effects while assisting with – and performing as – set pieces.
Victor Hugo’s Notre-Dame de Paris
“The Gothic Revival in France, 1830–1845: Victor Hugo’s Notre-Dame de Paris, Popular Imagery, and a National Patrimony Discovered”: An essay by Julie Lawrence Cochran on the impact of the images from Hugo’s novel on French views on architecture, from the 1999 anthology Memory & Oblivion.
“How a Novel Saved Notre Dame and Changed Perceptions of Gothic Architecture” : Architect Richard Buday’s article in ArchDaily describes the relationship between the cathedral and the novel.
The Hunchback of Notre-Dame: Released in 2002, Catherine Liu’s new translation includes sections of the novel traditionally omitted from English translations as well as an introduction by Elizabeth McCracken.
“Notre-Dame de Paris: The Cathedral in the Book”: A journal article from the Winter-Spring 1985 issue of Nineteenth-Century French Studies by Illinca M. Zarifopol-Johnston that provides a literary analysis of Hugo’s use of the cathedral in the novel.