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Asian Theatre History

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Asian Theatre History Theatre 1-2 Christy Moss Fall 2011 THE MIE Mie poses are an important part of kabuki and an indication of the dance origins of its performance. – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Asian Theatre History


1
Asian Theatre History
  • Theatre 1-2
  • Christy Moss
  • Fall 2011

2
General differences between western and eastern
theatre
  • The play isnt written first in Asian theatre.
    The story isnt the most important element.
  • Asian theatre is a combination of song, dance,
    narrative, and great performers (essential).
  • Dancing and acting work together in Asian
    theatre.
  • Performers come to and move through audience.

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Noh Drama
  • Most elitist, most exclusive form of drama.
  • Closely related to Zen Buddhism
  • Evokes and uses a sense of mysticism and the
    supernatural.
  • Term Yugen- relates to the total experience of
    the Noh play. You must look at the surface as
    well as what lies beneath.

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Continued
  • Play structure
  • Noh Drama contemplates a past action.
  • The past is reflected by the characters on stage.
  • Mystical demons and ghosts.
  • Noh Dramas are presented in a 5 play cycle. Each
    with its own beginning, middle, and end.

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Continued
  • Acting roles
  • Shte
  • Primary character
  • The audience is interested in his journey and his
    emotions.
  • Waki
  • Secondary character
  • Traveling priest
  • Gives audience the exposition and sets up the
    play
  • Other roles
  • Chorus and musicians
  • Both are seated on stage left or up stage. They
    are the speakers for the whole play.

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Continued
  • Characters usually wear elaborate masks that show
    the audience the characters emotions.

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Continued
Tree
  • Stage Structure

Pillars
Hurry Door
AUDIENCE
Hashigakari
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Continued
  • Tree is the only fixed piece of scenery
  • Small pine trees are on the bridge (hasigakari)
  • Hurry door stage left for unimportant
    entrances and exits.
  • Hasigakari Bridge over audience for IMPORTANT
    entrances and exits.

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Bunraku
  • Japanese puppet theatre
  • NOT for children
  • Puppets are made of wood or porcelain and are 2/3
    human size. They wear Kabuki like costumes.

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Continued
  • Puppet Manipulation and Functions of Puppeteers
  • Puppet is controlled by three puppeteers.
  • 1 for hand inside puppet that controls head and
    right hand.
  • 1 for left hand and movement of body.
  • 1 for foot movement and sound effects.
  • Puppeteer and puppet become one.
  • Puppeteers are masked and wear black.

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Continued
  • A single narrator does all of the character
    voices, sounds, and singing. There is one
    musician for music.

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Kabuki
  • Theatre style began toward the end of the 16th
    Century in Japan.
  • Believed to begin as a womans idea.
  • Structure of plays
  • First impact is physical
  • Series of conventions and symbols
  • Lots of movement, sound, and props
  • The fan was the most popular prop greatest
    variety of uses
  • Lack of continuous plot beauty was more
    important.
  • Elaborate staging.

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Continued
  • Dance, song, and narrative are extremely
    important.
  • Males play both female and male roles, even
    today!
  • Costume and Make up
  • No masks
  • Beautiful and elaborate costuming
  • White face, black and red make up used for
    detailing.
  • Men who played women wore red lips and eyes.
  • Male roles had bold red and black lines on face
    and body the bolder, the more powerful.
  • Wigs were made for each actor.

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Continued
  • Kabuki uses lots of scenery, like Broadway
    musicals.

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MIE Pose
40
THE MIE
  • Mie poses are an important part of kabuki and an
    indication of the dance origins of its
    performance. Basically mie poses are a freezing
    of a climatic moment in several rigid snapshots
    called mie.
  • A mie pose is a highlight of a kabuki
    performance. And while the principal actor poses
    mie, the others on the stage usually stop their
    movements. The full attention of the audience and
    the actors is focused on the mie pose. Mie is
    considered as a challenge for each kabuki actor
    and can be played only by experienced performers.

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Continued
  • Stage Structure primarily a western style stage.

Turn Table
Audience
Hanamichi
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Continued
  • Hanamichi Bridge over audience. Allows
    audience to see action next to them.
  • Elaborate scenic devices were used like the turn
    table.
  • Lots of scenery.
  • Thirty people or more were onstage at any given
    moment- LARGE PRODUCTION!

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Beijing Opera (formerly Peking)
  • Structure of performance
  • Acting, dancing, and singing occurred before the
    text was performed.
  • Three part performance
  • Acrobatic displays and dancing/ singing acts.
  • Pantomime act.
  • Text performed.

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Continued
  • Acting roles
  • Sheng Male lead roles
  • Lao Sheng old men
  • Xlao Sheng young men
  • Wu Sheng Warrior types
  • Tan Female lead roles
  • Qing Yi Quiet and gentle
  • Hua Tan Vivacious
  • Lao Tan Old Woman
  • Wu Tan Warrior Maidens

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Continued
  • Ching painted face roles (warriors, bandits,
    courtiers, officials, gods, and supernatural
    beings)
  • Chou Comic or Clown (Uses improvisation)

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Questions to ponder
  • What are the major differences between western
    and Asian theatre?
  • Which form of Asian theatre uses puppetry?
  • What is the point of the mie pose in Kabuki?
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