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Rituals to Renaissance

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Presentation on theme: "Rituals to Renaissance"— Presentation transcript:

1 Rituals to Renaissance
Theatre History Rituals to Renaissance

2 Rituals - 38,000-5000 BC Oldest form of expression – storytelling
Used masks, costumes, and visual art Begins with primitive man as dance and rhythmic movement These rituals explained tradition, tribal history, religion, why thing happen in nature Rituals evolved into pantomime - stories shown not told Gave youth of a culture a guide and plan for their own lives

3 Rituals Rituals are related to 3 basic concerns:
Power – influencing and controlling events Pleasure – social events, entertainment Duty – worship, god(s) related Often times the acting/leadership role was filled by elders and priests. Acting space (theaters) developed as more elaborate rituals were created.

4 Egypt B.C. “Pyramid” plays - religious plays about the deceased king’s soul being resurrected Coronation Festival plays - celebration of the new pharaoh Passion plays - murder of a king; battle, voyages, and a scary resurrection scene “Ra” plays - Ra (sun god) fought Apophis (snake god) of the underworld. Ra always won.

5 Potential Test Questions
Rituals are a type of _______________. Prehistoric tribes were able to communicate ________ through rituals How have the elements of rituals influences modern theatre?

6 Performance Assessment for Ritual
Get into groups of 3-5 and pick up 1 rubric Create a ‘ritual’ performance which includes the following A who, what, where, and conflict Explain the tribes tradition/history or natural occurrence Use pantomime and gibberish and facial expressions Use rhythmic movement and appropriate music This assignment will be performed the last 30 minutes of class as is worth 15 points

7 Greeks B.C. Performances grew out of religious festivals in honor of Greek God Dionysis Festivals (5-6 days) were held once a year in the THEATRON (“watching space”) which is where we get our word THEATRE All citizens were expected to attend Largest seated 1400 (1/2 population of Athens) Theaters were semi-circles built of stone into the hillside

8 Greek Theatre (continued)
Greek Theatre focused on TRAGEDY (issues of life, death, the gods) Actors all male/wore masks Chorus (12-50) acted out the story/life of the Gods together First producer/director/actor was THESPIS - “invented” acting when he steps out of the chorus to answer them --- this created stage dialogue


10 Greek Theatre (continued) - Playwrights
Aeschylus - (525?-456 B.C.) “Father of Tragedy”; considered to be the first playwright Idea of the play is the most important thing - not the character Adds a 2nd actor Sophocles ( B.C.) Writes about right vs wrong, the idea that man can not solve all the problems in the world Focuses on character -- drives the plot Euripides (480?-406 B.C.) First “Modern” playwright Writes plays of characters in relation to society and mocks them Characters are realistic No chorus

11 Roman Theatre - 6th century B.C.
Borrowed from the Greeks and “improved” on them Less philosophical than the Greeks Actors/performers were called “histriones” Encompassed more than drama : acrobatics, gladiators, jugglers, athletics, chariots races, naumachia (sea battles), boxing, venationes (animal fights)

12 Roman Theatre (continued)
Pantomime/Mime - solo dance, with music (lutes, pipes, cymbals) and a chorus. Used masks, story-telling, mythology or historical stories, usually serious but sometimes comic Spoken Usually short Sometimes elaborate casts and spectacle Serious or comic (satiric) No masks Had women Violence and sex depicted literally Scoffed at Christianity Needless to say, the Church did not look kindly at Mime.

13 Roman Theatre (continued)
Theaters are free-standing buildings with stadium seating Large stages (20-40 deep and feet long) Could seat 10-15,000 people Stage covered with a roof (often Audience covered with a awning to protect them from the sun Trap doors common Around 78 B.C. a cooling system put in place --- air blown over streams of water Sand on the stage floor

14 Potential Test Questions
Who was the 1st actor? Greek festivals were held in the ________. Roman festivals were held in the _______. Greeks used _____ to express emotion. Who is the chorus? What are the elements of Tragedy

15 Performance for Greeks/Roman
Get into groups of 5-6 and pick up 1 rubric Create a performance that has the following: A who, what, where, and conflict A character of high status who “falls” because of a fatal flaw A chorus and at least 2 characters Dynamic choreographed motivated movement This assignment is worth 15 points and will be performed the last 30 minutes of class today

16 Medieval Theatre ( ) Theatre is dead in Europe but active in Asia Traveling Troupes performed on wagons which opened to create a fixed stage - used props and costumes but in Europe no women performers 3 Types of plays performed Miracle Plays - enacted the lives of saints Mystery Plays - Bible stories sometimes also called “passion plays” Morality Plays - taught moral lessons - right vs wrong and the struggle between good and evil for the soul of Man

17 Potential Test Questions
True/False – Woman were allowed to perform in Medieval theatre. Everyman is a ___________ play. _____________ stories teach right from wrong. Stories about the bible are ___________ plays. How does Medieval Theatre reflect what is going on historically during this time period?

18 Performance Assessment
Get into groups of 4-6. Create a performance with the following A who, what, where, and conflict A type of medieval play (Morality, Mystery, or Miracle) with the proper elements Appropriate character choices Choreographed and motivated movement. This will be performed the last 30 minutes of class today. It is worth 20 points.

19 Italian Renaissance (1470-1550)
Built indoor theaters Church no longer “calling the shots” Commedia Dell’Arte - 1st form of improvisation; still traveling troupes that performed for $ from the crowd that gathered; plot summary learned by actors beforehand Considered to be the 1st “professional” theatre First in Europe to put Women on stage

20 English Renaissance (1470-1550)
Focused on the plays of Shakespeare, Marlowe, and Jonson Theatre saw an incredible burst of energy and talent -- 1 in 8 people regularly went to the theatre Purpose to entertain the rich. They got the good seats in the balcony and the poor stood below Roles were played by men (including women roles First time costumes fit the character

21 Shakespeare April 24,1564-April 24,1616
Noted to be the greatest playwright in history, although authenticity is questioned by many. He was an poet, actor, playwright, and producer Wrote 38 plays: histories, comedies, tragedies, and fantasies Balanced plot and character

22 The Globe Theater Built in 1599 - considered “indoor” Thrust Stage
3 Stories high Audience Sits around the stage Little furniture Burned down in during a performance of Henry 8th

23 The Globe today

24 The Globe Today

25 The Globe Today

26 French Renaissance (1550-1700)
Best playwright - Jean-Baptiste Moliere ( ) wrote comedies that focued on social “rules”; also called “Comedy of Manners” French Theatre had several rules Unities - time, place, and action had to be 24 hours or less Purity of Form - no mixing of Comedy and Tragedy “Verisimilitude” - the appearance of truth with the following categories - Reality (could happen in real life), Morality (teach a lesson), Generality (normal attirbutes), and Decorum (stereotypes)

27 Potential Test Questions
The Lazzi in Commedia Dell’Arte is a Piece of food Type of character Comedic bit None of these What elements of modern entertainment do we see being borrowed from the Renaissance Era?

28 19th Century Theatre (1800-1900) Naturalism (1850-1922)
The relationship between character and enviroment 2 important “creators” - Anton Chekhov (Russian playwright) and Konstantin Stanislavsky ( ). Both men demanded natural reponses from their actors. Psychological reactions of the characters could be more important than the situation itself. Stanislavsky created “The System” or “Method” acting - actor uses an “emotional memory” to create character/motivation.

29 19th Century Theatre (1800-1900) Realism (1850-1950)
A style showing life as “it really is” reflects real life The FOURTH WALL is established as a result - the idea that the actors can see through an invisible wall into the lives of the characters. Henrik Ibsen ( ) Playwright who saw theatre as a means to challenge “mistakes” he saw in the society he lived in. Most famous play A Doll’s House helped pave the way for women to be seen as equals.

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