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Commedia dell'Arte and Its Impact on Modern Comedy

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Matt Coggins

on 7 December 2013

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Transcript of Commedia dell'Arte and Its Impact on Modern Comedy

Commedia dell'Arte
and Its Impact on Modern Comedy

Commedia dell’Arte has had a major influence on comedy since its inception, from Shakespeare to Moliere to Charlie Chaplin. Contemporary comedy, in particular, borrows heavily from the elements of Commedia.
Commedia continues to impact the comedy we see every day, and its elements will likely continue to inspire for the rest of our lives and the lives of our children.
Although masks and elaborate costumes are no longer common, many elements of Commedia can be found in contemporary comedy:
Commedia’s Impact on Contemporary Comedy
Commedia dell'Arte
Italian form of theatre that began in the mid-16th century
Developed by skilled actors to oppose “buffoonery” and language-driven comedy
Comprised of stock characters, physicality, lazzi, and situations

Stock Characters
Lazzi
Situations
Contemporary comedies mirror common situations from Commedia

Stock Characters
Lewdness
Commedia was rife with sex and phallic images, but employed these devices in clever ways. You can see this mirrored these days.
http://www.nbc.com/saturday-night-live/video/nprs-delicious-dish---schweddy-balls/n11184/
Start at 2:00
Full transcript