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Theater Of Cruelty

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maddie muir

on 26 May 2014

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Transcript of Theater Of Cruelty

Theater Of Cruelty
What Is It?
Theater Of Cruelty is a ritual based on fantasy. The type of theater tries to attack the viewers subconscious and try to release their fears and anxieties that are normally kept in, then people will view themselves in a different way. Theater of cruelty uses less text and shows the emotion and what they are trying to say by using over exaggerated movements.
Who Created It?
Antonin Artraud, was a French play write, poet, actor, theatre director. He was born in Marseille France on the 4th September 1896 and died on the 4th march 1946. He had a Greek background. He had 8 siblings but only he and his sister survived. Antonin Artaud had a severe case of meningitis which gave him bad temper. He also suffered from neuralgia and clinical depression. He produced and directed original works, as well as pieces by Claudel and Strindberg. He studied acting in Paris and stared in Aurélien Lugné-Poë's Dadaist-Surrealist Théâtre de l'Oeuvre.
The History
The theater of cruelty originates from earlier dramatic conventions, tribal rituals, transfiguration and exaltation aswell as related arts like film, dance. Antonin Atraud is one of the most well discussed figures in the history of the 20th century though he was known as a poet inspirational, and is also known as a playwright, an actor, and artist, a designer and director. He believed that theater had turned play writing into a disaster and argued that theater practitioners should stop relating to a text and try to discover their own language and performance. Artraud rejected the regular ways that sugguested art reflected life and believed that theater should be like everyday life. Atruad instead of believing in others views decided to invent his own type of theater and argued that culture often hid what we truly were. For Atraud theater was a way of removing the restrictions that was once introduced by social media and cultural conditioning.

Atruads aim was to stimulate these responses through the creation of what he viewed theater of cruelty. His aim was to explore his theories as practice and experimentation. In 1934 he officially named his theory Theater of cruelty which portrayed his influence of symbolism and surrealism.Atraud did not start Theater of cruelty on his own. Atraud was founded for the Théâter Alfred Jarry in 1926 By Roger Vitrac. They presented four programs which included August Strindberg’s a dream play and Vitrac’s Victor.Atraud believed that civilization had turned man into sick creatures and that theaters true function was to rid of mankind’s repressions and liberate each individual’s instinctual energy. Atraud however also argued that the aim of theater should not be aimed toward solving social or psychological conflict but to express what he saw as the truth.

“Although only one of Artaud’s plays, Les Cenci (1935), based on works by Percy Bysshe Shelley and Stendhal, was ever produced to illustrate these theories, his ideas influenced the productions of Jean-Louis Barrault, Jerzy Grotowski, Jean Vilar, Peter Brook, and The Living Theater as well as the work of such playwrights as Arthur Adamov, Jean Genet, and Jacques Audiberti.gug” Theater of cruelty is one of the most vital forces of world history, yet the concept is often misunderstood.

How Is It Used And Who Has Used It?
Artaud wanted to provoke the audience so they would release their anxieties he believed were hidden beneath civilization. He described the energy and impact of a radical new way of performing and responding in strong and often dark imagery. He welcomed the desires that could be moved by suffering and pain, and argued that every aspect of theater should be active to increase a sense of danger, violence and disorientation in the audience. Artaud thought that his concept of cruelty was not aggressive; he wanted it to inspire what was honest and true.
Albert Bemel provides a useful summary of Artaud's suggestions for creating a theatre of cruelty:
“The kind of theater Artaud wanted was to use the classics but only after subjecting them to a radical overhaul. Lighting, sound equipment and other technical means would no longer subserve the text; they would partially replace it. The noises, music and colours that generally accompany the lines would in places substitute for them. They would be fortified by a range of human noises- screams, grunts, moans, sighs, yelps- together with a repertoire of gestures, signs and other movements. These would extend the range of the actor's art and the receptivity of the spectator. To put it another way, they would enlarge the theater's vocabulary…They would surrender themselves to a performance, live through it and feel it, rather than merely think about it.”

Artaud tried to stage his new style of theater with his version of Percy Bysshe Shelley's The Cenci. This first, and only production with ‘Theatre de la Cruaute' opened and closed in 1935. But although he did not introduce another production, the idea he had created continued to flow. Artaud's work and ideas began to take further grow after his death in 1948. His ideas began to inspire a new generation of theater critics and experts. In the 1950s, the concept of Theater of Cruelty was used to describe some of the dark views of human existence which were presented in the plays of Albert Camus and Jean Genet. The Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) also conducted trials with Artaud's theatre of cruelty in a series of workshops directed by Peter Brook.
Artaud has many theories as to what all theaters should be: He wanted to emphasize on the movement and lessen the amount of text.

Who Did He Inspire?
How Did Artaud Make The Theatre Cruel?
Artaud wanted the idea that the text should eliminated.
Artaud referred to spoken dialogue as ‘written poetry’ artaud wanted to emphasize on improvisation, and not scripts.
We do not intend to do away with dialogue, but to give words something of the significance they have in dreams (First Manifesto, Antonin Artaud) Artaud experimented with the actor-audience relationship he thought that the relationship between the actor and audience in the Theater of Cruelty was close.
Artaud attempted to reduce or eliminate the special space set aside for the actors (the stage) he wanted to highlight on light and sound in performance artaud wanted the audience’s senses to be assaulted with the movement, light and sound hence ‘cruelty’, music and sound voice, instrument, recorded often accompanied stage movement or text.
He wanted the actors to openly use emotions (opposite to Brecht and Epic Theater)
What Is The Significance Of This Clip?
This clip is showing us what the real world is actually like. Antonin Atraud wanted this to happen because he wanted the audence to feel scared and it to bring out there inner anxieties.
Full transcript