Presentation on theme: "Mrs. Brewer. Beginning of Renaissance Drama During the Middle Ages, English drama focused on religious themes and teaching morals. (Morality plays) During."— Presentation transcript:
Beginning of Renaissance Drama During the Middle Ages, English drama focused on religious themes and teaching morals. (Morality plays) During the Renaissance there was a resurgence in the interest of ancient Greek and Roman dramas. Current playwrights began writing plays based off of these ancient dramas. These current plays usually fell into one of two categories: comedies and tragedies.
Beginning of Renaissance Drama The interest in these plays began at universities, then the royal court, and finally with the general viewing public. Most plays were shown outside because of the need for large open spaces. The courtyards of inns were a popular place to hold a performance.
Theatres Permanent theaters were designed to resemble the courtyards. This design was best suited for viewing. James Burbage built the Theatre in 1576 in a suburb of London. The Rose and the Swan were two other theaters located on the Bankside area of Southwark. This location was popular so in 1599 the original Theatre was torn down and the Globe was built.
Theatres By 1600, London had more theaters than any other European capital. The Globe was a three-story wooden structure that could hold as many as 3,000 people. Plays were performed on the stage under the open roof. This open roof meant that plays could only be performed in good weather in the warmer months. Most of the wealthier patrons sat in the various covered galleries so that they were protected from the elements.
The Globe The area directly in front of the stage was not protected from the elements, so this area was designated for the poorer patrons. These patrons were called “groundlings,” or “stinkers.” The “groundlings” were very rowdy and let their opinion of the play be known. They would cheer, boo, and sometimes thrown rotten fruits and vegetables at the actors if they did not like the play.
Flags Since there were no neon signs to let the public know what play was being performed, the Globe had it’s own announcement system. A white flag indicated that there would be a comedy. The light color referenced the light nature of the play. A black flag indicated a tragedy. The dark color referenced the dark nature of the play. A red flag indicated a history. Red referenced blood, which is included in many histories.
Logistics of putting on a show There was no artificial lighting in the Globe so the plays had to be performed during the day. There was also no curtain so if an actor was killed on stage the writer had to write the play in such a way that the “dead” actor could be easily removed from the stage. The Globe had a trap door where ghosts or spirits could emerge.
The roof, the roof, the roof is on fire! In 1613, the Globe’s roof caught on fire during a performance of Henry VIII. A cannon was shot and some of the embers sparked a fire on the thatched roof. The entire theater burnt down. The original builder and Shakespeare’s acting company rebuilt it with a tiled roof to prevent future fires.
Comedies and Tragedies Comedies were considered to be any play that had a happy ending. Humor was not necessary in a comedy; however, most did have some elements of humor. Shakespearean tragedies stem from ancient Greek tragedies.
Greek Tragedies According to Aristotle tragedies aroused pity for the hero of the play and fear for all human beings, who are subject to character flaws and unknown destiny. Greek tragic heroes mainly suffered from hubris: excessive pride that led a tragic hero to challenge the gods. The tragic hero would always have a tragic ending based on how the gods punished him.
Greek Tragedies They also used a chorus to help the audience understand the play. The chorus was responsible for commenting on the characters and the events and letting the audience know when the demise of the hero was near.
Similarities between Greek Tragedy and Shakespearean Tragedy Tragic hero has an unhappy ending Tragic hero is generally a person of importance or royalty Tragic hero has extraordinary abilities but also has a tragic flaw
Main difference between Greek Tragedy and Shakespearean Tragedy Shakespeare used the literary device known as comic relief. Comic relief is when the writer puts a light- hearted or mildly humorous scene after an intense scene to help lessen the severity of emotions.