theater lecture notes

theater lecture notes - Chapter 1 Since early times...

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Chapter 1 Since early times, immediacy and presence have set theatrical art apart form other from other forms of art. Theater has been defined as a way of seeing men and women in action, of observing what they do and why they do it. It is an art form that engages human beings to tell stories about other human beings. Theater is an immediate way of expressing what it means to be human. Immediacy: Theaters living quality is immediacy. Theaters essential difference is its physical presence of actors and the audience. Different than other live events in that it makes us think and feel emotions. In contrast to the interactivity of electronic media, theater engages us in active, physical construction of behavior and meaning. Once a theatrical performance ends, it is gone forever. Theater is a living art form continuing in present time until the final moment. Six Parallels between theater and life: Actors  Humanity Simulation  Reality Rehearsal  Learning Improvisation  Spontaneity Stage  World Audiences  Society Theaters doubleness –art mirroring life and life mirroring art – is another special quality of theater. The Elizabethans had an idea of the stage as a mirror. In film, images transport us into new worlds of discovery. Theater uses other means to persuade us we are sharing in new experiences. Theater creates the illusion that we are sharing an experience with others for the first time. The three basic components of theater are the actor, the space, and the audience. First actor – Thespis Audiences Expectations include: - Audiences expect plays to relate to real life experiences. - Most audiences go to the theater expecting the familiar. (remember the lesson of Waiting for Gadot) - Another facet of the audience experience is the collective response. - Audiences must make preparations for attending a plan and observe other unwritten rules of decorum. - The audience, or spectator, is central to the theatrical event. Chapter 5 – Theatrical Writing Dramas forms fall into the following categories; tragedy, comedy, tragicomedy, melodrama, farce, epic, and absurd.
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Tragedy – first of the great dramatic forms in Western drama, makes a statement about human fallibility. A tragedy will always have a tragic realization; either despite suffering a world order exists and we can learn from suffering or suffering in an indifferent universe are futile but we admire the hero’s protest against them. The first tragic drama in the west was The Poetics by Aristotle. The heroes in ancient tragedies were aristocrats, but more modern ones are a common man. Euriphede’s Medea is a story of unrequited love. Comedy – examines the social word, social values, and people as social beings. Central figures are usually ridiculous characters. The writer of comedy calls for sanity, reason, and moderation in human behavior so that society can function for the well-being and happiness of its members. At the end of a comedy, the life force is celebrated
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This note was uploaded on 04/11/2008 for the course THEA 102 taught by Professor Kevin during the Fall '07 term at Binghamton.

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theater lecture notes - Chapter 1 Since early times...

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