INTRO TO THEATRE
INTRO TO THEATRE THTR 1020
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This 47 page Class Notes was uploaded by Ola Treutel I on Tuesday October 13, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to THTR 1020 at Louisiana State University taught by K. White in Fall. Since its upload, it has received 15 views. For similar materials see /class/222579/thtr-1020-louisiana-state-university in Theatre at Louisiana State University.
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Date Created: 10/13/15
Chapter 1 8252009 120100 AM Introduction to Theatre o What is Theatre 0 Theatre is art 0 Theatre is entertainment o What is Art 0 Skill a root word of technology Robert M Pirsig 0 Beauty Aesthetics is the branch of philosophy that deals with the nature and expression of beauty 0 Meaning Artists say This is life as I the artist see it This is my personal take on things o What should Art do 0 Should art be a thing of beauty and pleasure 0 Should art be a tool to educate 0 Should art be designed to inform influence and incite 0 Art can be all of the above o What actually IS Art 0 Art is a mirror which reflects the world around us 0 Art views par not the whole 0 The mirror of art can be distorted and selective o Qualities of Art 0 Made by humans 0 Perception of orderstructure o FormWhat the material becomes Bring meaning and purpose 0 Subject and medium Subject what the work is about Medium method substance and technique a How are we going to convey the subject o Every Art has its own medium 0 Spatial Arts Sculpture pottery architecture 0 Pictorial Arts Paintings photography drawing 0 Literary Arts Novels poetry short stories 0 Performing Arts Theatre music and dance o Unique qualities of Theatre 0 Live performers 0 Dynamic performance 0 Transitory art Theatre is always taking place here and now Theatre is never repeatable Theatre is performed a Theatre is to literature as music is to the score o Politics of Art 0 Artists state their opinions 0 Artists make value judgments 0 Artists reveal their philosophy 0 Artists often involved in politics o What is Entertainment 0 Reflects our own perceptions and ideas 0 Fulfills our expectations 0 Contains safe themes o Art vs Entertainment 0 Art Challenges Targets the individual Makes us think Requires active viewing Demands intellectual effort Potential agent of social change 0 Entertainment Flatters Targets the masses Makes us think we re thinking Passively viewed Requires little thought Unlikely to change the world o An Audience Manifesto 0 Steven Dietz American Theatre magazine 1993 n Chapter 2 8252009 120100 AM Comparing the Silver Screen o Theatre is Life Film is Art Television is Furniture 0 Theatre is Art 0 Film is a Business 0 Television is Furniture What are the foundations of these jokes o Stage Screen amp VideoTelevisionHome Theatre 0 All three involve a story that is performed All three can present entertainment drama and or art Both Stage and Screen are viewed amongst a group of people Both Stage and Television can present events which are occurring Live o Stage Screen Video 0 Dream Girls 0 Hamlet o Audience Similar but different 0 Audiences in the Theatre Are active participants with the actors View the medium as a shared experience Thrive on the risk factor of the living theatre 0 Audience for Film and Television Are recipients of the medium View the medium as a product Prefer to know in advance what they are getting for their money o Acting Similar but different 0 Acting on Stage Talent and training are essential Everything is a wideshot Memorization skills are required Must perform well with each performance 0 Acting on Film Photographic charisma and personality are important Often uses closeups Memorization is not as important Allowed to fail and try again 0 O O o Directing Similar but different 0 Directors in Theatre It is a playwrights medium Understand that when the performance begins the actors are in charge The director tends to work collaboratively 0 Directors for Film It is the director s medium Exerts absolute control over the performance The direct tends to works hierarchically and autocratically o Funding Follow the Money 0 Funding for the screen comes from Ticket sales Video and DVD Rentals Sale of movie rights a Titanic 0 Funding for the Theatre and the Arts comes from Ticket and concession sales Federal state and local government grants Corporate funding and private donations 0 Who Pulls the Strings Screen entertainment tends to put the values of the audience foremost Theatre tends to values the voice of the artist Bourgeois theatre and independent filmmaking will often combine both considerations 0 What happens when What is the effect on film and television when the number of producers shrink to a few media moguls and corporations o Views of the Relationship 0 Screen entertainment tends to view their audiences as consumers and what they do as a product 0 Theatre tends to view their audiences as equal participants in the theatre experience and what they do as artistic production o Challenges to Theatre 0 Silent Movies 0 Radio 0 Talkies 0 Television o Theatre Survives 0 Theatre offers something the challengers can not 1 A Dynamic Live Performance a Different every time n Interactive Performance 2 A Personal Human Connection a Real people not reflected or transmitted light a One individual performance at a time Chapters 3 4 8252009 120100 AM o Changing Role of Theatre 0 Entertainment of the few elite 0 Entertainment of the masses 0 The Great White Way o Types of Artistic Theatre 0 Theatre ofIdentity Promotes awareness of culture 0 Theatre of Protest Social agenda 0 CrossCulturalTheatre Blends ideas for o Theatre is a Group Experience 0 Psychology of Groups Form a collective mind or body Security and Affirmation a Free to react Lose individuality Sense of belonging o Audience Makeup and the Performance 0 Age of Audience Kindergarten Grade School High School College Rising Professionals ShortTimers Retirees o EthnicCultural background International National Regional 0 Expectations Football Baseball Hockey Golf O O 0 Size Audience of 60 Audience of 600 Audience of 6000 Distribution Audience of 60 in a theatre which holds 50 Audience of 60 in a theatre which holds 500 Role of Performers and Spectators How should the audience be involved a Active participant o Intensifies o Immediate n Passive observer o Art is a reflection not actual o Distance allows for perspective o Safety of distance Audience Etiquette Theatre of the past a Eat and drink throughout the show u Throw food at performers if you are displeased with performance 10 Commandments of Modern Theatre 1 Thou shalt not talk during the play 2 Thou shalt not cough 3 Thou shalt not eat 4 Thou shalt turn off cell phones and pagers 5 Thou shalt be courteous 6 Thou shalt not block the view of others 7 Thou shalt go easy on the perfume or cologne 8 Thou shalt not be late 9 Thou shalt not leave until the intermission or until the end 10 Thou shalt not take photos or use recording devices Critiques 23 Pages in length Not a synopsis of the story What connections can you make to classroom discussions What contributions did the nonperformance artists make Johann Wolfgang Goethe a What is the artist trying to do a How well has the artist done it a Is it worth doing What were your reactions to the performance Why are you having these reactions Are the reactions you are having and the reason you are having them consistent with who you want to be c Expectations of the Audience 0 Imagination ProjectionThey are there in every situation Acceptance of the nonreal n Supernatural o Witches gods ghosts n Distortions o Age gender time place a Willing suspension of disbelief o A Delicate Balance Willing Suspension of Disbelief n A contract the audience signs when they buy a ticket n Agreement to use imagination n Accept what is presented as real Aesthetic Distance n Also part of the contract a Agreement to relinquish responsibility n Remember what is presented is just pretend 0 Tools of Imagination Symbol n Something that signifies something else a Signs icons tokens emblems a Language is a symbol 1 Symbols carry meaning well beyond the symbol itself Metaphors n n n This is something else Theatre is a metaphor Used in character design and conceptual approach development The World around us is filed with symbol and metaphor o Imaginary Worlds of Theatre Realistic n n n n Observable Action Dialogue Scenery NonRealistic n n n n n Surreal SoMoquy Pantomime Musicals Design Theatre frequently blends realistic and nonrealistic elements 0 Limits and Boundaries What kind of limits should there be on what can be presented on stagescreenetc Who decides Chapter 5 amp 10 8252009 120100 AM Creativity and A Day in the Life of the Theatre o Creativity at its finest o I just don t have the time There is not time for the unpleasant or unvalued Time always appears for what has value and what we enjoy 0 It s really not something I m supposed to be doing How is success created o Linus Pauling 0 One of only a few people who has won more than one Nobel Pnze One of only two people to win prizes in more than on field Only multifield winner to win the prizes unshared When asked how he had so many good ideas Well you just have lots of ideas and throw away the bad ones You aren t going to have good ideas unless you have lots of ideas and some principle of selection The Rules of Play An Approach to being creative and other life lessons o The Rules of Play 0 1 You shall investigate the unfamiliar until it had become familiar o 2 You shall impose rhythmic repetition on the familiar o 3 You shall vary this repetition in as many ways as possible 0 4 You shall select the most satisfying of these variations and develop these at the expense of others 0 5 You shall combine and recombine these variations one with another 0 6 You shall do all this for its own sake as an end in itself o General connections 0 Keep your eyes and eats open for connections to things that you have already learned 0 Keep your eyes and ears open for things that you have yet to learn o More Specific Connections 0 1 ResearchNever stop learning 0 O O o 2 3 Develop a sensitivity for patterns themes and overtones o 4 Find your passion o 5 Enjoy your passion o Theatrical Organizational Structure 0 Creative equals Chapter 7 8252009 120100 AM The Art of Acting o All the World s a Stage 0 Imitation Children a form of learning 0 Hero worship o Role Playing Social Roles o Roles recognized by society 0 Job oriented roles o What are they Father Mother Child Teacher Student Waiter etc o Personal Roles 0 Personality oriented 0 Known or given by family and friends 0 Complimentary or fill a void Knowitall Computer Guru Clown Ladies Man o Role Playing in Drama 0 Social roles help us get to know what they are 0 Personal roles help us get to know who they are 0 Roles can be a shorthand to help us to know the character Roles can be a shorthand for others Roles cab be a shorthand for out selves Confused or missing roles n I don t know how to act a I am not your mother a You are not my mother o Real Life vs Onstage Similar but Different o Similarities Gesture Voice Tone Social Roles Personal Roles 0 Differences Always being observed Roles portrayed may be outside of their experience Historical background events are missing Multiple characters Aware that they are acting o The Performer s Responsibilities 0 O O O O 0 To move onstage with ease and authority To speak clearly and project his or her voice throughout the theatre To create and project the inner life of the character To interact with other performers To convey the playwright s and the director s intentions regarding both the character and the play To wear costumes and use props with poise and assurance o Three Challenges of Acting O O 1 Mastering of Craft The performer s voice a Breathing n Diction n Projection n Dialect n Musicals The performer s body a Movement and yoga a Stage combat fencing and martial arts a Dance and acting styles 2 Making Characters Believable Background The Development of Believable Acting n Old Style Acting Technique Craft a Modern Acting Talent The Stanislavski System a Konstantin Stanislavski n A Technique for achieving realistic acting a A Technique for teachinglearning realistic acting Goals of the Stanislavski System a Outward activities should appear natural and convincing n Convey the inner truth actor must believe n 1 Acting must be dynamic and continuous Strong sense of ensemble teamwork The Stanislavski Technique 1 n n n n n n Relaxation Concentration and Observation o Focus on stage not on the audience Importance of Specifics o Be specific Never general o Activities Inner Truth o Magic If A way that performers could cross that line to understand what the inner truth maybe o Characters Believe Emotional Recall o Emotional preparation Action Onstage What Why How o Motivations o What are you doing activities o Why are you doing it o How are you doing it Through line of a Role o Super Objective o Objectives o Through line the path How did you get here Ensemble Playing o Part of a group o Part of a team o No stars Voice and Body o The voice and body of the performer is their instrument o The performer needs to train to use their instrument o The performer must prepare their instrument Combining the two aspects of Acting Craft and Believability Exaggeration vs Believability Outer aspectsphysical Inner aspectsmental n Evaluating Acting Performances o Unconvincing o Overacting 0 Failure to achieve a satisfying balance between exaggeration and believability o Movement o Voice o Ensemble n The Actor s Life for Me o Call for Auditions o Audition o Call Back o Rehearsal o Blocking 0 Lines 0 Special Rehearsals Music Dance Fight 0 Character 0 OffBook 0 Tempo o Technical Rehearsals 0 Dress rehearsals o Previews 9quot O o Reviews o Run of the Show o Closing o Other Pieces of the Actor s World 0 Unions Actor s Equity Assoication AEA Screen Actor s Guild SAG American Federation of Television and Radio Artists AFFRA 0 New Challenges for Actors BlueGreen Screen Computer Generated 0 Pay and Benefits The Director 8252009 120100 AM The Director o Many Hats of the Theatrical Director 0 Key to the theatre event After the Playwright the 1St to work on the production Work may be less evident but overall the biggest effect Provides the vision of the show Rehearse the cast Coordinate with others Works with the playwright Responsible for the unity of the production The construction of a production is fragmented many artists many views The viewing of a production should appear unified made with one view 0 May start training in any area o Evolution of the Director 0 The function of the director has always existed Playwright Lead actor 0 Society becomes more complex 0 Style becomes more demanding o George II the Duke of SaxMeiningen 18261914 First Modern Director Long rehearsal periods Attention to detail in acting Advocated historically accurate scenery Adept at staging large ensemble scenes Changed the expectation of a director o Konstantin Stanislavsky 18631938 0 Viewed directing as a process of discovery 0 Every role is important There are no small parts only small actors o Encouraged long rehearsal periods o Choosing the Script 0 Sometimes the director is chosen for the script 0 Sometimes the script is chosen forby the director 0 O O O O O O O O 0 Attachment to the material 0 Intimate understanding of the script 0 Meet with playwright to shape new material o The Spine of the Play 0 Action which motivates the play 0 Hamlet Revenge Resolve Inner Conflicts Expose Corruption 0 Without a spine the play is in danger of being formless blob o The Style of the Production 0 How the spine is communicated o Spine What is central to the story 0 Style How the story will be told o Realistic styles 0 Naturalism Like film Slice of life Heighten realism or selective realism Resemble life but with artistic license Fragmented scenery SoMoquy o NonRealistic Style 0 Allegory Abstract ideas through characters Everyman Good Deeds Fellowship The Crucible Salem witch hunts vs McCarthyism witch hunt Parable or lesson 0 Expressionism Outward expression of inward feelings o NaturalismRealismHeightened RealismExpressionismAllegory The Art of Directing o Demands of Style 0 Appropriate to the play 0 O O O O O Two versions of The Physicists o Consistent throughout 0 Dracula Mainstream Movie HorrorGore Sensual Art o The Directorial Concept 0 An approach to achieve style 0 Idea Vision Point of View Period a Time of the Text a Time of the Playwright a Time of similar historical theme Central Image a Similar idea image or metaphor n HamletSpider Web o Concepts and Purpose 0 Bad Concepts Applied Superficial Forced 0 Good concepts Echo Resonate Illuminate o Director and the Dramaturg 0 New Position 0 Popular in Europe and going popularity in the US 0 Literary Manager Dramaturg researches the past plays 0 Read and Develop New Plays 0 Research the History of and around a play o Director and the Production 0 Physical Production Developing the concept Physical Requirements 0 Casting n n n n n Personality Physical appearance Type casting Casting against type Gender and racially blind casting Racially specific casting Auditioning Rehearsals PreBlocking Actor Blocking Blend of Both Is the intent evident and clear Is the company working together as an ensemble Sidebar The Stage Manager 0 Prepares rehearsal space Records rehearsal choices Coordinates with other production areas Calls the show Maintains the artistic integrity 0 Job Make sure things run smoothly 0 Unique position start to finish Real Job of the Modern Director 0 The director is the eye of the audience 0 Directing the focus of the Audience 0 Are both the spoken and unspoken aspects of the play clear Technical Rehearsals O O O 0 Add all of the elements Set the technical aspects Smooth the transitions Adjust to real space 0 Add costumes Previews 0 Do the perceptions from rehearsal match reactions of the Audience o What adjustments need to be made to accommodate the audience o Out of town tryouts The Art of Design 9232009 62400 PM Creating the Environment First point of contact for a performance is the space The Space set s the tone for the performance Conscious and deliberate effect Subconscious and accidental effect Stage Spaces Proscenium Stage All of the audience is on one side of the action 0 Proscenium Arch in the past Picture frame in the present The fourth wall Realistic scenery presents well Strong sense of focus The most presentational form Easiest form for the execution of effects Large scaleSpectacle House the audience space Stage House the nonaudience areas back stage Orchestra Pit Orchestra floor level Boxabove the house on the side Sightlines line of sight Fly Gallery Grid Raked House slanted Raised Stage 0 O O O O O 0 Stage Directions Actors looking out to the audience Downstage towards the audience Upstage away from the audience StageRight to the right when you are on the stage StageLeft to the left when you are on the stage Onstage towards center Offstage In down into view Out up out of view DSR DSC USR MSL Theatre Logic o Off is out out is up up is forward on is in in is down down is back left is right right is left and everyone works at a strike Stage Spaces o Arena Stage the audience surrounds the action 0 Also called Theatre in the Round 0 Many sporting events are presented in the round 0 Old history 0 Intimacy o Economical less expensive Limited scenery Low tech House Orchestra Raked House Grid Raised Stage Stage Directions get weird East West North South 0 Voms Vomitoriums tunnels coming through the audience o Thrust Theatre the audience if on three sides of action 0 The Perfect Balance Combine both Presentational and Intimate 0 Old history Greek Theatre Wagon Theatre Globe Shakespeare House Orchestra Raked House Grid Raised Stage Stage Directions Voms O O O O O O O o Tennis Courtquot Theatre The audience is on two sides of the action 0 Limited Intimacy 0 Poor scenic band for the buck o All of the disadvantages of Proscenium and Area with none of the advantages o All Purpose Black Boxquot Theatres 0 Flexible 0 Can be configured to be any seating format proscenium Arena Thrust 0 Can be configured to have m formal structure 0 Configuration might even change during performance o Beyond Seating Arrangements 0 Created and Found S aces Less formal theatre Nontheatre Spaces n Using any space for performance wo adapting the space to be a theatre n Audience within space 0 Adapted Spaces Space brings a tone to the show 0 Street Theatre Performances goes to the Audience Targeted at a particular community PoliticalGuerrilla theatre Quick o Multifocus environments More than one performance occurring concurrently For example Three Ring Circus Useful for juxtaposition Allows you to contrast two different ideas Flaws n Art is selective n Art has focus a Hard to concentrate o Some Other Considerations 0 Size Theatre of 50 or 5000 Intimacy vs Spectacle It is possible to be too close to Grand Spectacular Productions It is possible to be too far away from Delicate Intimate Productions Universal ScaleHumans Aesthetic Distance 0 Indoors Outdoors or Somewhere in between Indoors n Absolute Control Outdoors n Timeless Connection a Subject to Nature Designers o Are there any designers in here o Design 0 To conceive or fashion in the mind invent To formulate a plan for devise To plan out in systematic usually graphic form To create or contrive for a particular purpose of effect To have a goal or purpose intend 0 To create or execute in an artistic or highly skilled manner o Everyday Designers 0 Li htin Desi ner Party Lighting Romantic Dinner Overhead NightLite Table Lights BlindsCurtains 0 Sound Designer Party Music Romantic Compilations Home Theatre 0 Scenic Designer Selected a place to live Painted your room 0 O O O Selected furniture PostersPictures o Costume Designer Clothes selection Accessories Hairstyle o Learning About the Character 0 How does the light of the day effect your outlook on the day 0 What is on your MP3 player 0 What is in your room 0 What does what your are wearing say about you 0 Designers do the same thing in reverse o Three Faces of the Designer 0 Technolo ical Skill Examine the unfamiliar until it becomes familiar o Artistic Skill Tell a story Evoke a Response 0 Work and Play Well with Others collaboration o Goals of Theatrical Lighting 0 Selective Visibility Control what you can see Control what you can not see Reveal form 0 Support the Reality of the Play Motivated Lighting 0 Support the Composition of the Director Direct focus 0 Support the Mood of the Play NonMotivated Lighting o The Difference Between 0 The difference between Theatre and the Real world is In the Real world you don t have music playing in the background telling you how you should feel 0 Lighting Costumes and Scenery have a similar effect c Controllable Qualities of Light O Intensity Pitch Black Threshold of Visibility Pain 0 Color Every Hue ROYGBIV and M Saturate to Pastel to White Direction 360 Sphere Distribution Planar vs Textured Hard vs Soft Shape 0 Movement o What Definition Applies o Desi n To conceive or fashion in the mind invent To formulate a plan for devise To plan out in systematic usually in graphic form O 0 Properties o Props o Hand Props 0 Items the actors carry and handle 0 Lighter cigar case compact pill case cane etc o Set Props 0 Furniture set dressing nonstructural elements o Special Effects Scenery o Research o Sketches and Rendering o Groundplantop down view and Section o Scale 12 1 0 o Models o Elevations o Masking o Legs Tormentors or Torms o Borders or Teasers Batten Cyclorama Scrim Projection Screen Flats 0 Soft 0 Hard Platforms Stairs Ramps Ladders Wagons Turntables Treadmill Lighting Research Paperwork 0 Light Plot 0 Lighting Section 0 Lists and Schedules Hang o Positioning all the lights in a school Focus Programming Front Light Side Light Down Light Back Light Up Light Lighting Instruments 0 Ellipsoidal Reflector Spotlight ERS Leko o Fresnel A soft cotton puff of light Blending o PARParabolic Aluminized Reflector O O O O O O O O O Like the lights in your car Floodlight Light backdrops Follows spot Lights that are designed so they can be moved throughout the show Really bright Intelligent Lights One of the new lighting Spins Scrollers LED fixtures Green Allows to change all different types of colors Color Filters Gels Gobos A piece of metal that has holes in it that allows light to go through More with glass now Special Effects Strobe lights a Paparazzi in Royal Family Lasers Smoke Fog and Haze Dimmers What is used to control the intensity of the light Control Consoles Manual Two Scene Preset Computer Assist Computer Fade CrossFade Switching from one light to another Blackout SplitTime Sound Independently controlled 0 Linked Cues o Chases Research Sound Effects 0 Crickets Rain Thunder Wind etc Music 0 Preshow Intersession Exit 0 Motivated Reinforcement ReeltoReel Tape Mini Disc Compact Disc Computer Playback Shotgun Microphone 0 Long narrow mics Floor Mics Body Mics Costumes Research Sketches and Rendering Line Color Fabric Texture Accessories Pulling Costumes 0 Stock of clothing Building Costumes QuickChanges Overdressing FauxFasteners MakeUp 0 Straight 0 Character The Playwright and the Script 9232009 62400 PM Playwrite or Playwright o Writemark on a surface typically paper with pen o Wright A marker or builder The Playwright o Most of the time the Playwright works alone o The most time consuming of all of the theatre artists o Film Director has the most influence and gets top billing o Stage Playwright had most influence and gets top billing Unions o Writers Guild of America WGA 0 Closed shop union 0 Can call strike 0 Screen and television writers sell their copyright c Dramatists Guild of America DGA 0 Open shop union 0 Cannot call strikes 0 Playwrights keep their copyright c Playwright s pay Royalty Need for Structure o Structure exists to keep the play together to provide a framework o Two Principles of Dramatic Structure 0 Every theatrical event must have an underlying pattern or organization 0 Once a pattern or organization is established it must remain true to itself o Structure usually takes the form of plot Plot vs Story o Story 0 Usually a full account of the events 0 Usually in chronological order 0 Selection and arrangement of scenes taken from a story 0 What happens onstage 0 Responsibility of the playwright Subject and Verb of Drama o The subject of drama is people o Drama 0 Greek verb dran to do or to act o Action Act Perform o Playwright aka Dramatist Crucible of Drama o Conflict 0 People are frequently defined by how they respond to challenge and conflict Conflict is the energy source of the play Intellectual conflict is harder to present but nonetheless possible Theatre is about action Action is driven by the desire to resolve conflict o The game of theatre 0 Just like a sporting event theatre has rules 0 Theatre may be more or less complex than a sport 0 Rules may be less obvious 0 Rules exist nonetheless o Rules of Theatre 0 Limited Space In sports the playing field is clearly defined Stage space is limited World of the play is limited a City town country room 0 Limited Time Sporting events are rigidly timed Performance length is finite Typ 13 hours Story length is finite Lifetime day hours years Strongly opposed forces Provides conflict Good vs Evil Right vs Wrong Balanced Forces Incentive and Motivation Prize or carrot There must be a reason to fight 0 O O O O O O Framework of Dramatic Structure 0 Opening Scene Sets the tone for the play Some imbalance or disturbance is presented 0 Obstacles and Complications Objectives and Superobjectives Two steps forward one step back 0 Crisis and Climax Crisis leads to crisis Out of the frying pan and into the fire Final crisis is the climax of the show Dramatic Characters 0 Created in the mind of the playwright Revealed and displayed for the benefit of the audience Know and understand the characters quickly Types of Characters Extraordinary Characters n Kings Queens etc a Men and Women at their best or worst a People at the outer limits Representational or Quintessential Characters n Ordinary but notable as representatives of a group a Not at best or worst but as a norm Stock Characters n Stereotypical characters a Actions are predictable Characters with a Dominant Trait n Similar to stock characters but not so commonplace n Invented stereotypes Minor Characters n Servants soldiers etc a Dukes judges etc a Social roles Narrators and choruses O O O n Speaks directly to the audience a Comments on the action of the play Nonhuman Characters n Animals Lion Tin Man Scarecrow etc a Machines Androids Robots etc a Ideas Greed Good Deeds Envy etc a Used to comment on The Man o Climatic Structure 0 O O O O O O O The plot begins late in the story There is a history for the characters that exists before the play begins This history is now converging in a climactic manner Characters report this history via extensive exposition Time span of the play is usually short Realtime and stagetime are frequently equivalent A few long scenes Few locations Strong cause and effect relationship A leads to B B leads to C C leads to D etc until the story is told One main plot line with few deviations o Episodic Structure 0 O O O O O O O O O O O Begins early in the story Action expands at first then later contracts May not follow a strong cause and effect chain of events Many characters May cover an extensive timeperiod Shorts scenes may alternate with long scenes Story may include parallel or subplots Action alternates between elements to contrast and juxtapose them Irony is developed via contrast as well Public and private places Actions from both sides of the story Comic and serious scenes alternate 0 Overall effect is cumulative o Theatre of the Absurd o Emerged following WWII 0 Lack of reason to the universe 0 Waiting for Gobot o Absurdist Plot Embody a lack of reason Actions and words may be disc o Serial Structure 0 O O O O O 0 Series of events tied together by a common thread Musical Reviews One Act companion pieces Laundry and Bourbon Smokey Joe s Caf 2X5 0 A My Name is Alice Theatre Genre o Genre A category of artistic composition characterized by similarities in form style or subject matter o Useful to categorize different types of theatre but not all plays will fit into neat categories o Serious DramaAntigone Takes a thoughtful and sober attitude toward its subject matter Audience becomes involved and connected to the drama Audience thinks about the subject and themes of the play Tragedy Basic Questions of Human Existence 1 n n n n Why are people so cruel to one another Why are men and women called upon to endure suffering What are the limits of such endurance In the midst of cruelty and suffering what are the possibilities for achievement To what height of courage strength generosity and integrity can humans arise Universe of Tragedy n Indifferent to human concerns n Often cruel and malevolent n Innocents suffer while evil prospers n Some humans are capable of despicable things while others confront and overcome adversity Traditional Tragedy n Peak time Periods o Greece 500 BC o England Late 16th and 17th Century o France 17th Century a Story frequently deal with grand cosmic and universal themes and conflicts what is morally right and what is nationally right ANTIGONE n Tragic Heroes and Heroines o Extraordinary people Kings Queens Generals o Characters are important Therefore their story is important a Tragic Circumstances o Things go wrong o The universe seems to fight against the characters a Tragic Irretrievability c There is no way out o You can run but you can t hide a Acceptance of Responsibility o Characters good or bad accept responsibility for their actions o Oedipus n Tragic Verse o Poetry is used to convey the feelings and emotion o Because of the magnitude of the subject matter nothing less than poetry can adequately capture the feelings and emotions n The Effect of Tragedy Pessimistic 0 Characters can not escape 0 Characters can not win 0 Characters are Damned if they do and Damned if they don t Optimistic 0 Meet fate with dignity and determination o I will not go quietly 0 Characters fight for what is right no matter the consequence Modern Tragedy a Key differences from Traditional Tragedy Does not use extraordinary central characters Tends to use representational or quintessential central characters Text is not written in verse Text is written in prose or everyday language a Traditional Tragedy NonNoble characters lack the grandeur needed for tragedy NonNoble characters lack the control of their own lives to be able to Choose Ideas of tragedy can not be expressed through a Modern Tragedy There is no modern equivalent for Kings and Queens Audience can not identify with Kings and Queens Audience does not connect when the language is artificial Universal Tragedy n n a All tragedy asks the same kinds of questions The Effect of Tragedy remains constant The Effect is the Key 0 Heroic Drama Like traditional tragedy but differs in some key areas Happy ending Optimistic view of the world but with sad ending Death of hero or heroine but not tragic In Death they win or triumph o Melodrama Music Drama or Song Drama Music underscores the scenes Exaggerated theatre At its extremeLaughable Dedicated to engaging the audience and evoking a response at all costs a n n n n n n 1 Characteristics Audience is drawn into the action Issues are clearcut o Right vs Wrong o Good vs Evil Characters are simple o Old Westerns o Clearly good or bad Action is exaggerated o Characters are living on the edge of danger o Strong emphasis on suspense Frequently plays upon the fears of the audience The Deck is Stacked o Maximum effect Melodrama is Alive and Well Westerns Action Movies Science Fiction Horror Movies Soap Operas n n o Comedy Subject is not necessarily less serious Comedy is not without a message Comedy takes a different approach Holds things up to ridicule Don t be like this Laughter and Humor Elusive and difficult to define Uniquely human Wide range 0 O O O O n Detective Stories TV Grin to ROTFL Theatre encompasses all types of comedy and all types of situations Characteristics of Comedy Suspension of Natural Laws and Logic 1 n n 1 Actions do not have the same consequences of real life No real injuries Slapstick Cartoons Coyote physics Home Alone Any subject is fair game Murder Politically Incorrect Contrast between Social Order and the Individual 1 a Society Ordered Contrast between a normal rational and balanced society and the excesses of a group of characters Comedy World OK Characters excessive or out of step Tragedy Characters OK World excessive or out of step Individual is viewed as ridiculous not the institutions Modern comedy frequently reverses this contrast Comic Premise How are the rules of this world different than the 1 Techniques of Comedy 1 real world Exaggeration and Incongruity o Verbal Humor 0 Pun o Substitution of a word which sounds like the correct word but is not 0 The speaker is aware of the substitution 0 Lowest form of wit Shakespeare o Malapropism o Substitution of a word which sounds like the correct word but is not 0 The speaker is not aware of the substitution 0 Frequently the substituted word has a opposite meaning 0 Also can be a statement which reveals that the speaker is confused about what they are talking about 0 Mrs Malaprop Sheridan s The Rivals o Epigram o A pithy saying or remark expressing an idea in a clever and amusing way 0 Juxtaposition of two ideas which on the surface seem to be in conflict but also contains a truth 0 A Paradoxical Truth A man cannot be too careful in choosing his enemies Although beauty is only skin deep many have drowned there n n There is no shortcut to experience Man has a manysided nature and like the moon reveals certain phases at certain times Comedy of Character o Incongruity between the view the character has of themselves and the view that the audience or world has of them Plot Complications o Mistaken Identities o Falling house of cards 0 Forms of Comedy Farce It s Scary Yall Friends n n n n Broad physical humor Plot complications Stereotypical characters No intellectual pretentions Least reliant on verbal humor Sex and Marriage are frequent themesbackdrops but many other themes are used Three s Company Burlesgue n n n n n Knockout physical humor Gross exaggerations Distortion of accepted forms or material Risque Vulgarity Satire 1 n n 1 Like burlesque but more intellectual Wit Irony and Exaggeration used to attack something Pokes fun at something or someone Saturday Night Live Comedy of Manners Pokes fun at those who are attempting to fit in where they do not belong Poked fun at elite groups who are so uptight that they lose sight of the big picture Old English Drama The Rivas a Teen coming of age movies Clueless o Tragedy vs Comedy 0 Tragedy Sad Hero dies Frequently has comic moments Frequently ends with a fight to the death 0 Comedy Funny Hero lives Frequently has serious moments Frequently ends with a wedding happy ending 0 While frequently mixed strong imbalance 8020 0 Two different views of the same world 0 What about plays that don t fit Problem Plays o Tradicomedy o Intermix and Balance of Comedy and Tragedy 0 Natural laws and consequences are not so quickly dismissed n n NonWestern Theatre 9232009 62400 PM NonWestern Theatre Beginnings Ritual a ceremonial act connected with human life Purpose of ritual 0 To pass on traditions from one generation to another To influence nature through a means known as sympathetic magic To celebrate add commemorate rites of passage from birth to death Ritual o 1 Performed by priests or shamans o 2 Based in myth tradition or religion 0 3 Audience is often participatory o 4 Asks for sympathetic magic from nature Theatre 0 1 Performed by actors o 2 Based on a story with conflict 0 3 Audience often functions as spectator o 4 Asks for empathy for the play s characters NonWestern Theatre Examples of Ritual Theatre 0 Indigenous African ritual dance drama ie Yoruba from Nigeria 0 Abydos from Egypt about the death and resurrection of the god Osiris o Wayang Wong dance drama of Java 0 Aborigine dances of Australia 0 0 African Theatre Precolonial Theatre Employed acting costumes music storytelling and dance Often used masks Audience participation required Concerned with religion and community Storytelling often involved impersonation and mine Used verbal scene painting Masks 0 Help actors to identify with the characters they represent 0 Help the spectators to see the characters being portrayed or channeled 0 Provide added symbolic meanings to the event o Colonial Forms 0 With the invasion of European on the African continent African forms of theatre were undervalued o Spoken drama was favored over that of the indigenous dancedrama of many African peoples 0 European style dramaturgy and acting was emphasized over that of many if the African peoples that colonized o PostColonial Theatre 0 Beginning with the independence movements in the 19605 an amalgamation of indigenous African dance drama and European models created a new form called total theatre The Theatre of India o Natyasastra an ancient treatise on dramatic theory and practice dating from 200 BCE to 200 CE o Sanskrit drama uses Sanskrit the oldest of Indian languages and tells stories based on Indian myth o Shakuntala c 400 by Kalidasa one of the most often produced Sanskrit dramas o With the British invasion spoken drama quickly o Kathakali Indian folk dancedrama based on the Hindu Poems Ramayana and The Mahabartata Chinese Theatre o Early influences on China s ritualistic theatre o Confucianism Taoism and Buddhism o Pear Garden 0 School of the arts created by Emperor MingHuang in 714 CE o Peking Opera 0 Stylized acting o Painted face 0 Military and civil plays o Spoken drama 0 Goa Xingjian Awarded the Nobel Prize in 2000 Theatre of Japan c Early influences on Japan s ritualistic theatre o Shintoism and Zen Buddhism o Noh Theatre 0 Five types of stories 1 Deities 2 Hero 3 Women 4 Insanity 5 Legends 0 Each play has a three part structure Jo Ha and Kyu o It is a theatre of meditative restraint and poetic simplicity o Kabuki Theatre 0 From Ka Song Bu dance and Ki skill o A popular theatre form that includes elaborate scenography melodramatic acting and special effects o Bunraku Puppet Theatre 0 Intricate puppet theatre in which each puppet required three operations o Western Influences o Are evident in the plays of Yukio Mishima and in the work of director Tadashi Suzuki East Meets West Sanskrit drama stongly influenced the writing of Goethe s Masterpiece Faust The acting techniques of the Peking Opera influecedBertolt Brecht s development of Epic Theatre The Balinese dancers influences AntoninArtuad s Theatre of Cruelty The Kathakali dancers influences the directing style of French director ArianaMnouchkine Indonesian puppet theatre influenced the directing style of American director Julie Taymor ie The Lion King
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