English Renaissance( Art of Theatre) Week 2
English Renaissance( Art of Theatre) Week 2 THEA 11000
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Janell Notetaker on Thursday September 8, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to THEA 11000 at Kent State University taught by James A. Weaver in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 23 views. For similar materials see THE ART OF THE THEATRE in Theatre and Dance at Kent State University.
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Date Created: 09/08/16
ENGLISH RENAISSANCE SEPT 8 The Renaissance Represented a grand revolution in thinking, a new consciousness of the individual’s potential as a reasoning, creative, and possibly heroic being. The main purpose of the Renaissance was humanism, which was expressed by the Greek philosopher, Protagoras. Leonardo da Vinci’s drawing shoes the human body as the basis for geometry, the “Man is the measure of all human being embodied reason, order, thing.” and form. The human being was considered the -Protagoras modern Apollo. Apollo the Greek god who represented harmony, measure, balance, and order. The Elizabethan Age This age was considered a period of great artistic development in England. Refers to Queen Elizabeth I. Includes her father, King Henry VIII, reign and the two monarchs that followed her. Elizabethan Age did not weaken until the Puritan Revolution of 1642. The Puritan Revolution ordered an act of Parliament to close all public theatres. Sixteenth Century Renaissance English Theatres There were almost a dozen playhouses in London during Shakespeare’s period. Most playhouses performed plays regularly to large paying audiences. These playhouses housed dozens of professional acting companies and dramatic poets. How were the Theatres Constructed? Theatre buildings were exceptional wooden structures that towered over the homes in the Northern and Southern suburbs in London. The architecture was brilliant All public theatres were located outside the city limits, for the Puritan city officials forbade the public presentation of “unchaste fables, lascivious devices, shifts of cozenage, etc. The Theatres ENGLISH RENAISSANCE SEPT 8 The exact construction of theatres is not exactly known, but there is documentation of theatres that have survived, including a sketch by a Dutch visitor. A general idea of the theatres construction is shown and an experience of what it would have been like for a Londoner who took part in watching a Shakespeare play in the early 1600s. The Globe The Globe the primary theatre where Shakespeare’s company, “The Lord Chamberlain’s Men,” performed. One of four major theatres in the area Rose three stories high with a diameter of approximately 100 feet. Holds up to 3,000 audience members The stage was believed to have been 43 feet wide and 28 feet deep. Three rows of balconies are believed to have ascended almost all the way around the sides of the theatre. The existing Globe was built in 1996, 7 years after the foundations of the Globe were discovered in 1989. The present Globe opened in 1997 with the production of Henry V. The stage was a thrust Thrust surrounded on three sides by the audience Attiring House or dressing room. The back of the stage was a “tiring house.” A fourfoot by fourfoot trapdoor in the stage provided access to the “cellarage.” Cellarage the area below the stage from which actors could rise or vanish for special effect. A partial canopy that hovered the stage, called “the heavens,” sometimes gave the actors the opportunity to descend with the use of pulleys. The Playing Space In the Globe, audience members can either watch from the balconies or stand in the “yard” right up against the stage. The Pit In Shakespeare’s time, only a penny was due from the audience who sat in the pit, in order to watch the show. These spectators were called, “groundings.” Groundings the spectators who stood on the ground. The Performances ENGLISH RENAISSANCE SEPT 8 In the Elizabethan theatre, women were prohibited from performing, only men were allowed to perform during this theatre. Adolescent boys were dressed as women and played female roles. Due this social reality, women roles were limited in the Elizabethan theatre. it was known that women would often disguise themselves as men. William Shakespeare (15641616) One of the most famous playwrights in the Renaissance Born in StratforduponAvon, United Kingdom the son of a businessman, a glovemaker and bailiff of the town, a position that was considerably close to a mayor. Married 26yearold Anne Hathaway at the age of 18. Had three children, Susana, Judith, and Hamnet, whom he left unexpectedly along with his wife, and moved to London. Became a part of the acting company at the age of 28 called, “The Lord of Chamberlain’s Men.” Retired from the theatre in 1610 as an affluent man. Later returned to Stratford and passed away in 1616. According to public records, he left his wife his “second best bed,” in his will. A Time of Curiosity and Adventure The Renaissance was the age of Magellan and Galileo – a time of curiosity and adventure. International awareness was at its peak during the reign of Elizabeth I because of the events that led to the discovery of the new world, including “Sir Francis Drake’s” voyage around the world. This includes Sir Walter Raleigh’s exploration of North America, and an astonishing naval victory over the Spanish. Exotic Locales of Shakespeare’s Plays Verona, Venice, Denmark, Athens, Egypt, and Padua are the exotic places that Shakespeare reflected on in his plays. His fellow playwrights also took most of their plots from foreign places, and also included foreign phrases. The Plays of Shakespeare Are grouped into four categories: Comedies: Twelfth Night Tragedies: Romeo and Juliet Histories: Henry IV ENGLISH RENAISSANCE SEPT 8 Problem Plays: Measure for Measure Shakespeare’s Sonnets due to the plague, theatres were closed and Shakespeare was commissioned to write sonnets for wealthy private patrons. Sonnets were an important part of Shakespeare’s body of work In total, there are 154 sonnets which center around two main “characters”: a married woman and a conflicted love for a fair young man. Sonnets sexual desire, procreation, love, death and time, are usually the themes. The speaker of the sonnets is unknown, there has been allegations that the speaker was Shakespeare himself, putting his sexuality at risk. Iambic Pentameter The main language structure used by Shakespeare was a type of verse called “blank verse” or iambic pentameter Iambic Pentameter a tensyllable line in which the stress falls on the second, fourth, sixth, eighth, and tenth syllables. Prose and Verse Shakespeare would write in prose, and would often shift back and forth between the two as a way to convey an emotional change a character might be undergoing, or to differentiate between characters. Prose or unmetered speech. Shakespeare chose this style of verse due to its popularity at the time and also because it most closely resembles the natural rhythms of English Speech. EX: Shall I compare thee TO a SUMmer’s DAY? It IS the EAST and JULiet is the SUN. Thou ART more LOVEly AND more TEMPerATE. Did they Speak as the Characters Speak? It is a common misunderstanding to think that people during the Elizabethan Era spoke the way the characters spoke in Shakespeare’s plays. This assumption is false. It is the same as if someone listened to our rap music 400 years from now, and determined that, that must have been the way Americans spoke today. ENGLISH RENAISSANCE SEPT 8 New Words Shakespeare not only wrote in verse, but he also used words from foreign languages, and even made up new words. It is a fact that he invented over 1700 words. Like the audiences today, Shakespeare’s audiences would have relied on context to help them understand many of the words they didn’t know.
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