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201 Class 30 - THTR 201 THEATRE APPRECIATION January 18,...

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THTR 201 – THEATRE APPRECIATION January 18, 2011 How to Read a Play Trifles by Susan Glaspell
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Review from last week Can you answer the following questions? What is a theatrical event? What attributes define an object or event as art? Why is theatre defined as art? How is theatre the same as other art forms? How is theatre different than other art forms? How does an audience contribute to the art form of theatre? What type of organizations produce theatre in
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Today’s Goals Learn the techniques needed to successfully read a play, as opposed to experiencing a play in performance Learn the basics of play analysis Learn to identify the various genres of theatre
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Goal 1 Learn the techniques needed to successfully read a play, as opposed to experiencing a play in performance We will use the play Trifles as our example
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Why do I need to learn how to read a play? Reading is reading, correct? If I can read a novel, newspaper, or magazine, I can read a play, right? Well, yes and no. Remember, the goal of the class is to appreciate theatre. We can appreciate something more if we know more about it, what makes
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Before we begin, some information about our play…
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Trifles by Susan Glaspell Written in 1916, Susan Glaspell’s one-act play Trifles is loosely based on true events. As a young reporter, Glaspell covered a murder case in a small town in Iowa. Years later, she crafted a short play inspired by her experiences and observations. It is seen as an example of early feminist literature, because two female characters are able to solve a mystery that the male characters cannot, aided by their knowledge of women's psychology.
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Susan Glaspell (1876-1948) An American Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright, actress, director, and bestselling novelist She was a founding member of the Provincetown Players, one of the most important collaboratives in the development of modern drama in the United States. Her novels and plays are committed to developing deep, sympathetic characters, to understanding 'life' in its complexity.
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Now, on to How to read a play Reading a play is different than reading another form of literature. Dramatic literature, or plays, requires some work on the part of the reader. Learning to read a play allows you to experience the play as a theatrical event in your imagination. A point to remember: plays are meant to be heard, not read, so learning to hear them in your mind is part of the skill of reading a play.
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Reading the text of a play offers an incomplete experience. Example: musical notes written on a page are not “music”, instead the notes are the map or guide that leads us to the actual sensual (aural) experience that is music. Literature is not a theatrical event, though it
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This note was uploaded on 02/27/2011 for the course THTR 201 taught by Professor Joelebarb during the Spring '11 term at Purdue.

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201 Class 30 - THTR 201 THEATRE APPRECIATION January 18,...

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