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Ancient Greece

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by

Catherine Daigle

on 12 November 2014

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Transcript of Ancient Greece

All actors were
men
.
Used
masks
- expression (mournful, smiling, leering), acoustics, character differentiation.
The Chorus
- group of actors who
moved
and
sang
together-- acted as one character and spoke in unison. Sets the
mood
, summarizes
action
, represents

point of view
, sides with various
characters
, and warns of
disasters
.

Greek Theater
Incorporated unities of
time
,
place
, and
action
, which meant that there was no scene changes, and no complicated
subplots
; the plays took place in
one
day and in one place and focused on one event.
Violent action
took place
offstage
; messengers told the audience what happened.
Audience knew the
story
ahead of time. The
emotion
of the character is what they came to see.
Terminology
Orchestra
: "dancing space"
Circular
Area where chorus could dance and sing and interact with actors on stage near the
skene
Theatron
: "viewing space"
Part of the hill side, wrapped around the orchestra
Skene
: "tent"
Directly behind the
stage
Usually decorated like a
palace
, temple, or other building
Had at least
one
set of doors
Access to roof
Parados
: "passageways"
Pathway used by
chorus
and actors to make entrances and exits.

Antigone and Her Family Background
Antigone
is a
complete
play, but it is part of a cycle of three plays, including
Oedipus Rex

and
Oedipus at Colonus
, written by Sophocles about the generations of the Cadmus family.
Plays deal with the
curse
placed upon the family for a crime committed against the
gods
.
Curse begins with a
prophecy
to King
Laius
and Queen
Jocasta
of Thebes that their son,
Oedipus
, will kill
his father
and marry his
own mother
.
Ancient Greece (500-323 B.C.) and greek theater
Comedy
- Contemporary figures and problems
Happy Ending
Performed only once in
competition
type atmosphere
Tragedy
- means "goat song" (perhaps referring to
goats
sacrificed for the festivals.
Mystic past.
Main character suffers downfall.
Main character is usually
royalty
.
Tragic flaw
: part of their character that leads to their downfall.
Satire
- mythological subject handled in comedic manner.
Born in
496 BC
- live for
90
years.
One of three great Greek
tragic
playwrights (Aeschylus and Euripides were the other two); wrote during the "Golden Age" of
ancient Greece
.
Wrote over
100
plays, but only
7
remain.

Began with festivals that honored their
gods
.
Dionysus
in particular- "City Dionysia" in Athens.
Tragedies
Three types of plays performed.
Greek Theater
Sophocles
Sophocles
Entered his plays in
contests
- won his first at age
28
(defeated Aeschylus in that competition).
Won
first
place
20
times and
second
all other times.
Added
third
actor to the cast of his plays- before, all
dramas
were played with only
two
characters other than the
chorus.
To avoid fulfillment of the prophecy, the baby Oedipus was left in the
mountains
to die of exposure, but was found and raised by the king and queen of
Corinth
, not knowing his birth parents.
Later, Oedipus unknowingly kills
his father
and wins the hand of
Jocasta
, the widowed queen, thus fulfilling the prophecy. They have four children:
Antigone
,
Ismene, Eteocles, and Polyneices.
When Jocasta discovers the truth, she
hangs herself
. When Oedipus discovers the truth, he
blinds and exiles himself
. He leaves his brother-in-law,
Creon
, to look after his children.
Before he dies, Oedipus leaves orders that
his two sons
share the kingship; however,
Eteocles
, the first to reign, refuses to step down.
Polyneices
, his brother, attacks the city and his brother. They kill each other in battle.
Creon
becomes the king and orders
Eteocles
buried with religious rights and honors. He orders that
Polyneices
be left unburied and uncovered for birds and animals to feed on his body. According to
Greek beliefs
, his
soul
could thus never rest.
Antigone
buries her brother against the orders of her uncle, thus begins the play's action.
Full transcript