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By J.C. Gafford, MA TA100 – Introduction to Theatre Fall 2010.

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Presentation on theme: "By J.C. Gafford, MA TA100 – Introduction to Theatre Fall 2010."— Presentation transcript:

1 By J.C. Gafford, MA TA100 – Introduction to Theatre Fall 2010

2 Asia is located North of Australia, East of USA and Northeast of South America.

3 1. Indian Theatre -Sanskrit Literature -Natya Shastra -Classic Indian Playwrights -Midieval Indian Theatre 2. Chinese Theatre -Shang Theatre -Tang Theatre -Xiang Sheng -Sung and Yuan Theatre -Beijing Opera 3. Southeast Asian Theatre -Thai Theatre -Cambodian Theatre 4. Japanese Theatre -Noh & Kyogen -Bunraku -Kabuki -Butoh

4 -Sanskrit Literature Sanskrit is a historical Indo-Aryan language and the primary liturgical language of Hinduism and Buddhism. Every word of Sanskrit expresses substantial, spiritual and celestial meanings. Beautiful Sanskrit Chanting

5 -Sanskrit Literature Indian drama is a distinct genre of Sanskrit literature emerges in the final centuries BC, although its origins date back to the Regvedic dialogue hymns (savāda-sūktas) of the late 2nd millennium BC. Scholarly treatises are a formal and systematic written discourse on some subject, generally longer and treating it in greater depth than an essay, and more concerned with investigating or exposing the principles of the subject. Fairy tales and fables were chiefly characterized by ethical reflections and proverbial philosophy. A peculiar style, marked by the insertion of a number of different stories within the framework of a single narrative, made its way to Persian and Arabic literatures, exerting a major influence on works such as One Thousand and One Nights.

6 -Sanskrit Literature Classical poetry refers to the poetry produced from approx- imately the 3rd to 8th centuries. A striking characteristic is that sometimes poets show off their technical dexterity with highly complex word-games, like stanzas that read the same backwards and forwards, words that can be split in different ways to produce different meanings, sophisticated metaphors, and so on. Puranas usually give prominence to a certain deity (Shiva, Vishnu or Krishna, Durga) and depicts the other gods as subservient. Traditionally they are said to narrate five subjects, called pañcalakaa ("five distinguishing marks"). They are: 1. Sarga, the creation of the universe. 2. Pratisarga, secondary creations, mostly re-creations after dissolution. 3. Vamśa Genealogy of royals and sages. 4. Manvañtara Various eras. 5. Vamśānucaritam Dynastic histories.

7 Koodiyattam [kutiyattam] meaning "combined acting, signifies Sanskrit drama presented in the traditional style in temple theatres of Kerala and is the only surviving specimen of the ancient Sanskrit theatre. It seems that kutiyattam is an amalgam of the classical Sanskrit theatre of ancient India and the regional theatre of Kerala.

8 -Natya Shastra The Natya Shastra (Sanskrit: Nātyaśāstra ) is an ancient Indian treatise on the performing arts, encompassing theatre, dance and music. It was written during the period between 200 BC and 200 AD in classical India and is traditionally attributed to the Bharata Muni who is often known as the father of Indian theatrical arts. The Natya Shastra, which has been compared to Aristotle's Poetics, is incredibly wide in its scope. While it primarily deals with stagecraft, it has come to influence music, classical Indian dance, and literature as well. It covers stage design, music, dance, makeup, and virtually every other aspect of stagecraft. It even addresses the proper occasions for staging a drama, the proper designs for theatres, the types of people who are allowed to be drama critics and, most especially, specific instructions and advice for actors, playwrights and (after a fashion) producers.

9 -Classical Indian Playwrights Bhāsa is one of the earliest and most celebrated though, very little is known about him. Bhāsa is dated between the 2nd century BCE and 2nd century CE (Common Era). Kālidāsa (Devanāgarī) was a renowned Classical Sanskrit writer, widely regarded as the greatest poet and dramatist in the Sanskrit language. His floruit cannot be dated with precision, but most likely falls within the Gupta period, probably in the 4th or 5th or 6th century. The place bestowed to the English poet Shakespeare is considered akin to that held by Kālidāsa in Sanskrit literature. His plays and poetry are primarily based on Hindu Puranas and philosophy.

10 Kavirathna Kalidasa – Bhoja rajana aasthaana Kathakali performance Onam Greetings Kerala

11 -Midieval Indian Theatre Kathakali (katha for story, kali for performance or play) is a highly stylized classical Indian dance-drama noted for the attractive make-up of characters, elaborate costumes, detailed gestures and well-defined body movements presented in tune with the anchor playback music and complementary percussion. It originated in the country's present day state of Kerala during the 17th century and has developed over the years with improved looks, refined gestures and added themes besides more ornate singing and precise drumming. Bhavabhuti (Sanskrit: ) was an 8th century scholar of India noted for his plays and poetry, written in Sanskrit. His plays are considered equivalent to the works of Kalidasa. Harsha ( ), a powerful Indian Emperor, is credited with having written three plays: the comedy Ratnavali, Priyadarsika, and the Buddhist drama Nagananda. Many other dramatists followed during the Middle Ages. Kathakali

12 -Shang Theatre There are references to theatrical entertainments in China as early as 1500 BC during the Shang Dynasty 1600 BC–1046 BC; they often involved music, clowning and acrobatic displays. -Tang Theatre The Tang Dynasty, 618–907 AD, is sometimes known as 'The Age of 1000 Entertainments'. During this era, the 7 th Emperor, Xuanzong or formed an acting school known as the Children of the Pear Garden to produce a form of drama that was primarily musical. The Pear Garden or Liyuan ( ) was the first known royal acting and musical academy in China. It may be the first institutional Academy of Music in the world. That is why actors are commonly called "Children of the Pear Garden". In later dynasties the phrase "Pear Garden" was used to allude to the world of Chinese opera in general.

13 -Xiang Sheng Xiang Sheng sometimes translated as crosstalk, is a traditional Chinese comedic performance in the form of a dialogue between two performers, or, much less often, a solo monologue or, even less frequently, a multi-player talk show. The language, rich in puns and allusions, is delivered in a rapid, bantering style. Xiang Sheng is one of China's foremost and most popular performing arts, and is typically performed in the Beijing dialect (or in Standard Mandarin with a strong Beijing dialect slant). Xiang Sheng Sample – 3:20

14 Abbott & Costello Whos On First? Martin & Lewis

15 -Sung and Yuan Theatre In the Sung Dynasty (960 and 1279), there were many popular plays involving acrobatics and music. These developed in the Yuan Dynasty into a more sophisticated form with a four or five act structure. Yuan drama spread across China and diversified into numerous regional forms, the best known of which is Beijing (or Peking) Opera, which is still popular today. Peking Opera – White Snake Girl

16 -Thai Theatre In Thailand, it has been a tradition from the Middle Ages to stage plays based on plots drawn from Indian epics. In particular, the theatrical version of Thailand's national epic Ramakien, a version of the Indian Ramayana, remains popular in Thailand even today. La dame flottante (Ramakien)

17 -Cambodian Theatre (Khmer) Khmer theatre provided a movement and style that date back to the Khmer empire era (9th to the 13th century.) These ancient forms were divided but collectively are widely known as Dance Drama. The Forms are: Lakhon Kback Boran or Lakhon Luang is a famous theatre performed by the women of the court, this graceful and beautiful type of the Khmer classical dance has been associated with the country's royalty for over a thousand years. Lakhon Khol also known Mask Drama is a theatre of the male troupe that can perform mask pantomime. Lakhon Poul Srei is the female version of lakhaon khaol (classical male masked theater), which literally translates as 'female narration'. Both forms combine classical theater and dance and are accompanied by the traditional pin peat orchestra. Khmer Pinpeat Orchestra Khmer Pinpeat Orchestra Lakhon berk Bat is a lost theatre form in Cambodian Court. It is believed to have originated in the middle post Angkor period, (18th century). The form disappeared again in the late 1970s during the time of the Khmer Rouge regime. It is assumed that lakhaon berk bat was only performed in the presence of Royal or noble families due to the dancers elab­orate and expensive costumes and jewelry. Lakhon Pleng Kar is a drama performed accompanied by classical traditional wedding music. The drama, like the music, is believed to have appeared as early as the 1st century during the wedding ceremony of Preah Neang Neak-Princess Naga-and Preah Thong­Brahman Thong.

18 -Noh & Kyogen Noh, or Nogaku is a major form of classical Japanese musical drama that has been performed since the 14th century. Many characters are masked, with men playing male and female roles. Traditionally, a Noh 'performance day' lasts all day and consists of five Noh plays interspersed with shorter, humorous kyōgen pieces. However, contemporary Noh performances consist of two Noh plays with one Kyōgen play in between.

19 -Noh Theater:

20 -Bunraku Japan, after a long period of civil wars and political disarray, was unified and at peace primarily due to shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu (1600– 1668). When peace did come, a flourish of cultural influence and growing merchant class demanded its own entertainment. The first form of theatre to flourish was Ningyō jōruri (commonly referred to as Bunraku). The founder of and main contributor to Ningyō jōruri, Chikamatsu Monzaemon (1653– 1725), turned his form of theatre into a true art form.

21 -Bunraku Bunraku

22 -Kabuki Kabuki began shortly after Bunraku, legend has it by an actress named Okuni, who lived around the end of the 16th century. Most of Kabuki's material came from Nõ and Bunraku, and its erratic dance-type movements are also an effect of Bunraku. However, Kabuki is less formal and more distant than Nõ, yet very popular among the Japanese public. Kabuki - Genuine Kabuki - Spoof

23 -Butoh Butoh appeared first in Japan following World War II and specifically after student riots. The roles of authority were now subject to challenge and subversion. It also appeared as a reaction against the contemporary dance scene in Japan, which Hijikata felt was based on the one hand on imitating the West and on the other on imitating the Noh. Butoh


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