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The Renaissance Theater


The Renaissance Theater (pg 283) Drama as Teacher: The Forerunners Some scholars believe medieval drama evolved from church ceremonies Deus ex machina- God in the ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: The Renaissance Theater

The Renaissance Theater
  • (pg 283)

Drama as Teacher The Forerunners
  • Some scholars believe medieval drama evolved from
    church ceremonies
  • Deus ex machina- God in the machine, artificial
    device used to arbitrarily resolve a plot
  • Early drama so important because it taught
    lessons and morals and combined the comedic and
  • Before Renaissance drama, there were two main
    types of plays
  • Miracle Mystery Bible stories, lives of the
  • Morality How to live and die
  • Plays in the early 1500s were often interludes
    one-act farces where the playwright got credit

Old Traditions, New Theaters
  • Although new theaters were being built, many
    performances were taking place in improvised
    spaces or the large house of royalty/nobility
  • James Burbage took part in the creation of the
    first theater. It was named
  • the

The Globe This Wooden O
  • The most famous of the theaters was the Globe
    because Shakespeare performed and authored plays
    that were performed there
  • The three main parts to The Globe Theater were
    the building proper, tiring house, stage
  • A trip to the theater cost one cent one could
    watch from the yard (standing), from the upper
    balconies (sitting, which cost more), and from
    the stage itself
  • It held up to 3000 people
  • Theaters were often closed due to epidemics of
    the plague

  • Up Close and Personal
  • Because they were so close to the audience,
    actors needed many skills, including singing,
    dancing, declaiming, wrestling, fencing,
    clowning, roaring, weeping, and whispering.
  • The ceiling represented the Heaven and the
    floor represented the Hell
  • Behind the Scenes
  • The tiring house contained machinery and dressing
    rooms it was the 2-story back wall for the stage
  • The gallery held the audience or musicians, or it
    was part of the stage (balcony, tree, tower,
  • To let the audience know if the production was
    taking place indoors or outdoors, the furniture
    was moved forward through a curtain (indoors) or
    backwards (outdoors) dialogue was also a big

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  • The Power of Make-Believe
  • The audience knew time and place for a scene
    through props and dialogue
  • Renaissance drama was a drama of persons, not a
    drama of places because it focused on
    characters (no sets dialogue gave the
  • Pomp and Pageantry
  • Although any scenery was basic, many things about
    the theater were ornate (very decorative) the
    theater was painted brightly with curtains and
  • The actors wore elaborate and expensive costumes
    and used elaborate props they staged complicated

  • Music Most Eloquent
  • Music (vocal and instrumental) was used in the
    plays to set tone, announce a play, show
    character or mood, or entertain between acts
  • The songs in Shakespeares plays are the best
    because of good lyric and dramatic poetry there
    was a variety of songs
  • Varying the Venue
  • Acting companies also performed in great halls of
    castles or manors, (bear pits), or private
    theaters (Blackfriars a former monastery)

William Shakespeare
  • Born in Stratford-on-Avon on April 23, 1564
  • Performed his plays for two monarchs of England
    Elizabeth I, James I
  • Shakespeare applied for a coat of arms and bought
    an estate in Stratford to become one of the
  • James I did much for Shakespeare and his company
    he became their patron (The Kings Men), gave
    them patents to perform anywhere, gave them
    clothing for state occasions, increased their
    salaries, appointed chief members to be grooms of
    the royal chamber
  • Shakespeare wrote three types of plays Comedies,
    Tragedies, Histories

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