THE BIRTH OF DRAMA

Report
OBJECTIONS TO
PLAYHOUSES
Raffaella Mannori 2013-2014
MYSTERY
PLAYS
MORALITY
PLAYS
ENGLISH
PLAYHOUSES
SOME
IMPORTANT
DATES
THE AUDIENCE
THE ACTORS
THE BIRTH OF DRAMA
THE BIRTH
OF DRAMA
THE BIRTH OF DRAMA
Raffaella Mannori 2013-2014
LITURGICAL
DRAMA
MYSTERY
PLAYS
MORALITY
PLAYS
INTERLUDES
THE BIRTH OF DRAMA
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MYSTERY PLAYS
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MYSTERY PLAYS
The history of English drama begins with the elaboration of
the ecclesiastical liturgy;
The rituals of Christian church at Christmas and Easter were
inherently dramatic ( mutually answering dialogues between
the priest and the choir);
This liturgical dram moved out of the church , first into the
churchyard and then into the market place ;
Once outside the church vernacular ousted Latin and the
story elements include the whole range of sacred history
from thecreation to the Last Judgement;
Liturgical drama gave way to plays in English, performed in
the open , not related to liturgy but still religious in subject
matters;
Their organisation and financing passed into lay hands :trade
guilds took over the sponsoring of the plays
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MYSTERY PLAYS
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Morality PLAYS
They differ from MYRACLE PLAYS because
they didn’t deal with biblical stories but with personified
abstractions of virtues and vices, who struggle for man’ssoul;
They developed in the 15° century ;
Other common themes were THE DANCE OF DEATH ( in
which Death comes and summons all, high and low alike) and
the SEVEN DEADLY SINS
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EVERYMAN
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EVERYMAN
EVERYMAN is summoned by death to make
long journey from which there is no return ;
he looks for friends to accompany him , but
neither FELLOWSHI and GOOD DEEDS are
willing to act as guide.
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THE INTERLUDE
A kind of secular morality play with
comic and realistic elements;
a sort of playlet which oiginated as a
performance between the courses of a
banquet;
it marked the transiction from
medieval religious drama to Tudor
secular drama
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Elisabethan playhouses
The world of the theatre
London’s permanent theatres
• The building of
permanent
playhouses
in London marked
a break with the
past.
• The beginning of
the plays was
announced by the
hoisting of a flag
and the blowing of
a trumpet
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The world of the theatre
SOME IMPORTANT DATES
• The Elisabethan theatrical world 1558-1642 ( in which theatres were
closed down by the Puritans who controlled the City of London)
• The first permanent public theatre :The Theatre (by James Burbage,
1576)
Towards the end of the 16th century, several theatres were
built.
• The Curtain (by James Burbage, 1577)
• The Rose (by Henslowe, 1587) The Swan (by Francis
Langley, 1595)
• The Globe (by Richard Burbage, 1599)
• The Fortune (by Henslowe, 1600)
• At the end of the reign of Elisabeth there were 11
theatres in London, including public and private houses
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The world of the theatre
OBJECTIONS TO PLAYHOUSES
Respectable people and officers of the Church often made
complaints of the growing numners of play-actors :
 the plays were often lewd and profane;
 the play-actors were often vagrants, irresponsible and immoral
people;
 the taverns and disreputable houses were often found in the
neighbourhood of the theatres;
 theatre itself was a public danger in the ay of spreading
diseases;
 the streets were overcrowded after perfomances and so crimes
occured in the crowd and beggars infested the theatre section
 Elisabeth ‘s policy was to compromise she regulated abuses but
allowed the theatre to thrive.
 In 1576 one oredr prohibitd all theatrical performances within the
city bounderies
 This banishment was not a misfortne but a cause of immediate
growth : across the iver there was room or as many thaetres as
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people desired.
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The Architecture
of Theatres
The playhouses:
• were round or octagonal in
shape;
• were 12 metres high;
• had a diameter of 25 metres;
• had a rectangular stage.
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Internal layout
The same basic
structure consisted of:
a stage partially
covered by a thatched
roof supported by two
pillars and projected
into a central area.
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Internal layout
The structure included
three tiers of galleries
around the stage with
actor’s dressing room
at the back.
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Elisabethan playhouses
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Elisabethan playhouses
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The audience
• The spectators ate and
drank during the
performance.
• They freely expressed
their emotions with
laughter or tears.
• They had a relish for
language and long
speeches.
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The world of the theatre
The audience
• They were eager for sensation and
overwhelming emotion.
• They loved metaphor and extremes.
• They enjoyed thrills and horror.
• They loved chronicles and history plays with
heroic deeds (strong national feeling).
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The actors
• Actors had to join a company of a prominent figure
and bear his livery and arms (The Chamberlain’s
Men of Elizabeth I and the King’s Men of James I).
• Theatrical companies were gradually transformed
from irregular associations of men dependent on
the favour of a lord to stable business
organisations
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The world of the theatre
The actors
 An actor’s shareholding depended on the sum he
invested to buy props and costumes of which he was
joint owner.
 They :
 share in the profits and the expenses;
 handle the financial questions;
 hire extra stff;
 decide which play to perfom;
 wok as stage- hands
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The actors
• They had to vary their repertoire.
• They had no more than two weeks to
prepare a new play.
• They often found themselves
playing several roles in the same
performance.
• They should have excellent
memory.
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Female roles
• Companies included 5/6 boys to play female
roles until their voices broke.
• They learnt singing, dancing, diction and
feminine gestures and intonation from a very
young age.
• Contemporary audiences found them very
convincing.
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The world of the theatre
THE BIRTH OF DRAMA
• Elisabethan drama was the result of a fusion
between two different elements :
• The classical drama of the Renaissance
• The domestic tradition of mystery plays,
morality plays.
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The world of the theatre
MEDIEVAL ELEMENTS
• Mingling of comic and tragic elements ;
• In the absolute disrespect of the Aristotelian
unities of time, place and action;
• In the concept of crime & punishment , which
was a characteristic of morality plays;
• Tragedy does not spring from the hostility of
fate as it does in the Greek tradition but from
a flaw in the protagonist’s personality.
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CLASSICAL ELEMENTS
Seneca influenced tragedy:
A. The theme of revenge;
B. The inevitability of Fate;
C. The violent treatment of murder , cruelty
and lust;
D. The stoic moralising;
E. The supernatural element in the apparition
of ghosts and forwarding dreams
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The world of the theatre
QUESTIONS
 Why did liturgical dram move out of the church?
 Fill in the table in the following slide about the
characteristics of mystery plays and morality plays:
 What does the interlude represent in the development
of English drama?
 What are the two souls which form the Elisabethan
drama ?
 What is the «blank verse»?
 When was the end of Medieval religious drama?
 Which period did Reinassaince drama flouurish in
England?
 What is the difference between public and private
playhouses?
Raffaella Mannori 2013-2014
The world of the theatre
QUESTIONS
 Why did liturgical dram move out of the church?
 Fill in the table in the following slide about the characteristics of
mystery plays and morality plays:
 Why was medieval dram important in the develoment of the
genre?
 What is the «blank verse»?
 When was the end of Medieval religious drama?
 Which period did Reinassaince drama flouurish in England?
 What are the main characteristics of the Reinaissance drama?
 What were the main reasons to write for Reinnaissance
playwrights?
 Who were the «University Wits « and who was the most
celebrated among them?
 Why was Italy often chosen in English plays as a background
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for violent crimes and unning behaviour?
The world of the theatre
MYSTERY PLAYS vs MORALITY PLAYS
MYSTERY
Subiect
Language
Characters
Setting
Sponsoring
Place of performance
Authorship
Raffaella Mannori 2013-2014
Actors
MORALITY

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