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Dramatic Structure & Dramatic Characters

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Evelyn Goodwin

on 20 November 2014

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Transcript of Dramatic Structure & Dramatic Characters

Dramatic Structure & Dramatic Characters
Types of Dramatic Structure
1.
Climactic structure
Plot begins late in the story:
In a climactic structure, a large amount of background information is given before all ends of the story tie together, or hit the climax/main plot.
Scenes, locales, & characters are limited:
This particular structure normally requires only a limited number of different scenes or characters to produce the play.
Construction is tight:
This type of structure is carefully constructed. No loose ends are left out of the story. Everything meets a resolution at the end of the play. It is a "Cause and Effect" method.
2. Episodic structure
In contrast to a climactic structure, an episodic structure has an obvious plot line that can be observed fairly close to the beginning of the play. They do not necessarily have to follow a cause and effect progression.
People, places and events proliferate:
There may be a parallel plot or subplot:
Juxtaposition and contrast occur:
The overall effect is Cumulative:
"A series of acts or episodes." This structure is the Netflix binge-watch of the theater arts. Today, many people stream 45 minute television shows online. They can watch an entire television series within a couple of days. The play form works the same way as a series on TV. Whatever story is being told may be continued over the course of a few acts or a few separate performances, but there is an overarching theme that is carried out throughout the completion of the story being told.
Serial Structure:
Dramatic Characters
Extraordinary characters
: Ordinary people, as opposed to members of the nobility, began to be the heroes/heroines of drama in the 18th century. An extraordinary character plays a major role in plays, movies and etc. Such characters are members of nobility and they are held in a special place in society. He/she are capable of doing things no other human could possibly do. They represent a different kind of behavior that is so extreme and powerful but at the same time so vulnerable and weak. These types of characters exist in both tragedies and comedies. In most cases, he or she represent the best or the worst of human behavior but to the extreme. Just like the video explained, we as humans reflect on our world through symbolic stories of our own lives.
Why does this matter?
Dramatic structure and dramatic characters make up a relatable alternative reality that provides entertainment in a means that allows us to forget our own struggles, if only for a few moments.
Representative or Quintessential characters:
Representative and quintessential characters are nothing out of the ordinary. They don’t represent anything extreme and are often just typical or ordinary people. An image that might pop in your head when you think quintessential would be the “typical American”. The stereotypical American life which consists of representing the most perfect or typical example of a quality or class. These characters are representatives of certain types of people we see and interact with in our daily life. They stand apart, but not above. For example, the movies “Cat in the Hat” and “Edward Scissor-hands” take place in a perfect little communities. The towns consists of everyone having the same car, yard, and house and the father goes to work while the mother stays at home cleaning and cooking.
Stock Characters:
A stock character is a fictional character based on a common literary or social stereotype. Stock characters rely heavily on cultural types or names for their personality, manner of speech, and other characteristics. These characters are one dimensional and not as complicated. Usually, they represent one particular characteristic to the exclusion of virtually everything else.
Stock characters are often known by their station in life, gender, and occupation. Stock characters typically appear in Melodrama, comedies, and commedia dell'arte which is a popular Italian comedy developed in the 16th-17th centuries. An example of this is a dumb blonde. Stereotypically blondes tend to be attractive and desirable but don’t use common sense. They are often portrayed as a dehumanized antagonist also known as a blonde cheerleader.
A character with a dominant trait is a character with a single attribute or “humor”. In the 16th century, during the Renaissance, there was a widely held theory that the body was governed by four humors, which must be kept in balance for a person to be healthy. Weird. The extremes of a character are one of the elements that create the comic effect.
Characters with a dominant trait:
Minor Characters:
Juxtaposition is a literary device wherein the author places a person, concept, place, idea or theme parallel to another. From Greek theater we have the terms protagonist and antagonist.
Protagonist
is the main character and most prominent figure in a play whereas an
antagonist
in the main characters enemy or rival. An example of this would be the famous story called Cinderella. Cinderella is the main character of the story while her stem mother is the antagonist because in a way she is Cinderella’s arch-enemy. The step mother doesn’t harm her stepdaughter physically. Rather, she seeks to punish and abuse her psychologically, motivated by her jealousy of Cinderella being far more beautiful than her own daughters, Anastasia and Drizella.
Juxtaposition of Characters:
3. Combination of climactic and episodic structures:
Structure in experimental and avant-garde theater:
Special Structures:
1. Emphasis on nonverbal theater; gestures, body movements and sound without words.
2. Reliance on improve rather than reliance strictly on the written text.
3. interest in ritual and ceremony.
4. interest in the physical environment in theater, keeping in mind such things as spacial recognition between the actors and the audience.
A narrator or chorus; A special type of character:
Nonhuman characters:
Segments and tableaux as structure:
Though types of avant-garde theater often stress non-verbal elements, there can still be structure. Often, the various elements are still united by a theme.
Minor characters play a small part in the over all action of the play. They serve chiefly to further the story or to support more important characters. They help to fill in the missing pieces of the story and keep it moving forward. Sometimes they act symbolically and help move the show that way. They are great for comic relief. Most of the time they will act bumbling,scared or goofy when the main character will not. Minor characters are sometimes maids, servants or soldiers.
Orchestration of Characters
The orchestration is very important. It is the organization of characters so that each character represents the theme in its own way. It is organizing them so that it is not what one character does but what they all do to create the desired effect. Anton Chekav is very well known for doing this in his productions.
Speaks directly to the audience
Ancient greek drama had a chorus usually cosisting of 15 preformers.
Counterpoint: term from music denoting a second melody that accompanies or moves in contrast to the main melody
Occasionally an actor may portray something that seem less than human, such as an animal or a robot. Usually when this occurs, human attributes are still involved with the character. This may be the case as with the princess and the frog, where the prince is turned into an animal, but he can still speak, giving him a human quality that a frog otherwise would not have.
Incorporating connections between present and past events
Elements are fused together.
By The Extras:
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