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Transcript of GREEK DRAMA
Origin And Purpose
Ancient Greece: the birthplace of what we now know as modern drama. Spectacular Ampitheatres, Timeless plays, and the worlds greatest playwrights were born here. But where did these ideas originate? Who invented Greek Drama?
Greek theater design set a precedent for the future in all areas including, stage and chorus placement, dressing rooms and acoustics.
Man versus Fate
- This theme was found mostly in Greek Tragedies. During the play, the hero is destined to his fate. He must face a serious moral choice where he must take a course of action that causes pain and suffering. He often sets himself equal to or above the gods. He cannot escape his fate because it was already predetermined by the gods.
Man versus Society -
This theme does not focus on fate, but rather the coincidences, chances, and accidents that affect the characters future. These types of plays deal with everyday life, relationships, and money.
Impact on Later Theater
After the Classical Age:
An in depth analysis of the theater can be found here: https://www.thinglink.com/scene/832617582753218562
Hellenistic Theater soon developed causing Greek Theater to change.
Fifth century B.C. was the
of Athens where a collection of fine drama developed and matured. (reached us 2000 years later)
In 5th century B.C. Greece, festivals were held to honor Dionysus.
Festivals consisted of singing and dancing, and eventually evolved into early plays, which were short and simple.
These plays gained complexity and became a more formal and serious part of the festivals until they became the cornerstone of the celebrations.
The plays were then organized into a competition of three playwrights.
Each playwright wrote 4 plays: a trilogy of 3 tragedies about the same subject and a satyr play for comedic effect.
The plays depicted some aspect of religion with which the audience was familiar, usually putting a unique spin on a famous myth.
Alexander the Great's death started all of these changes to occur. Athens was now a colony to Macedonia leaving the democracy to no longer be independent.
The festival attracted a plethora of visitors from all over Greece, it was held in Athens.
All were invited: rich and poor; men and women; freemen and prisoners; adults and children.
They watch plays from sunrise to sunset, and on the last day crowned the winning playwright.
Playwrights were revered in society as superstars, similar to a popular NFL player today.
DESIGN OF THE THEATER
During the Hellenistic Age the stage was supported by huge pillars was about 10-12 feet above the orchestra.
Often the stage was shaped as a semi-circle
The skene had columns & now had 1-3 doors for actors to enter the stage
are tall, triangular prisms on either side of the skene, used on the Hellenisitic stages
revolved to show a change in location
During this time period, there are various types of actors
Wore thick-soled high boots & a tall dress
Costumes were important so actors could be visible on stage
Comic Actors ( New Comedy):
omitted padding used in Old Comedy
wore costumes based on ordinary life
Masks & Mouthpieces large & exaggerated
*This is when the down turned mouth on masks became a symbol in theater
Actors soon began to create professional organizations called guilds
In this you can find playwrights, actors, chorus members, musicians, and costumes.
Performed plays on their own & in other countries introduced classical drama to larger parts of the world
Use the following links to further study Greek Drama, including flashcards and a test.