Background 1563-1616 Stratford-on-Avon, England wrote 37 plays about 154 sonnets started out as an actor
Background Cont Actor for Lord Chamberlain’s Men (London theater co.) Also > principal playwright for them 1599> Lord Ch. Co. built Globe Theater where most of Sh. Play’s were performed
The Globe Plays produced for the general public Roofless>open air No artificial lighting Courtyard surrounded by 3 levels of galleries
The Audience Wealthy got benches “Groundlings”>poorer people stood and watched from the courtyard (“pit”) All but wealthy were uneducated/illiterate Much more interaction than today
Globe Staging Stage>platform that extended into the pit Dressing & storage rooms in galleries behind & above stage second-level gallery> upper stage> famous balcony scene in R & J Trap door>ghosts “Heavens”> angelic beings
Difference from Today No scenery Settings > references in dialogue Elaborate costumes Plenty of props Fast-paced, colorful>2 hours!
Elizabethan Actors Only men and boys Young boys whose voices had not changed play women’s roles Would have been considered indecent for a woman to appear on stage
Shakespeare Wrote Comedies – Taming of the Shrew, The Tempest Histories – Richard III, Julius Caesar Tragedies – Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, Othello, Macbeth, King Lear
Romeo and Juliet Most of the play written in blank verse – Iambic Pentameter: iambic (unstressed, stressed) pentameter( 5 “feet” to a line) – ends up to be 10 syllable lines
Verse vs. Prose Lower Socio-economic characters spoke in prose ROMEO AND JULIET speak in sonnets! – 14 Line poems ending in a rhyming couplet!
Literary Terms Allusion Antagonist Aside Characterization : Indirect and Direct Conflict Dialogue Drama Foil