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Surrealism and Dada in the Theatre

Presentation for DR251 03/29/11
by

Leya Burns

on 29 March 2011

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Transcript of Surrealism and Dada in the Theatre

Surrealism and Dada in the Theatre Rene Magritte, The Treachery of Images Surrealism An art movement of the early twentieth century, in which the artist sought to go beyond realism, into superrealism Salvador Dali, The Peristence of Memory Max Ernst, L'Ange du Foyeur Dada a provocative and playful European art movement that followed World War I characterized by random, unstructured, and “anti-aesthetic” creativity. It was briefly but deeply influential in poetry, painting, and theatre Man Ray, Le Violon D'Ingres Surrealism and Dada, which are inextricably connected, both began around the time of the First World War as a reaction against both the horrors of the war and the corrupt societal ideas the artists felt caused the conflict. Theatre Most surrealist and dada theatre was largely improvised from concepts or ideas; it incorporated poetry, dance, and music most, of which was designed to shock or even offend the audience. In 1986, John Stevenson wrote about Dada's "self-proclaimed leader" Tristan Tzara organizing a final dada production in Zurich, Switzerland in 1915. After a progression of dance, music and monologues, an actor succeeded in so offending the audience with a comment about Napoleon that they "leaped onto the stage, brandishing pieces of balustrade... The whole place was in an uproar.

Tzara was delighted. The "cretinization of the public" had been achieved. The performance was stopped and the lights went out. During the twenty minute intermission, the audience "gained in self-awareness", the rage subsided, and a calm ensued that ruled the final part of the programme. ...Tzara would later proclaim,

The public was tamed. Dada had succeeded in establishing the circuit of absolute unconsciousness in the audience which forgot the frontiers of education, of prejudices, experienced the commotion of the NEW. Final victory of Dada. Dada and surrealism sought to question and even destroy the traditional asthetics of art. "Chance poetry," performed by pulling words out of a hat, was commonly seen. Antoine Artaud proposed what he called a "theatre of cruelty" in which the actors would act out all of their emotions physically; Artaud believed that the written word had corrupted the original intention of theatre. A video about dada, done in the movement's style. Due to the unusual nature of production of surrealist and dada theatre, there exist vary few fixed plays that could be characterized as definitively "surrealist" or dada; plays such as Alfred Jarry's (1896) are cited as pre-cursors to surrealist theatre, and the two styles tend to meld into the greater umbrella of the "avant-garde." Ubu Roi http://www.tranquileye.com/theatre/dada_theatre.html
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