Chapter 8. Modern and Postmodern. Previous ages include –. Classical (Greece and Rome). Medieval (Mystery and Morality Plays). Renaissance (The Elizabethan Age in England). The Royal Theatre (The Court Theatre of Spain and France). ID: 698795
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THE MODERN THEATRE
The Theatre by Robert Cohen
Modern and Postmodern
Previous ages include –
Classical (Greece and Rome)
Medieval (Mystery and Morality Plays)
Renaissance (The Elizabethan Age in England)
The Royal Theatre (The Court Theatre of Spain and France)
The Romantic Theatre (Neoclassical)
THEATRE IN THE EAST
India (Sanskrit drama,
Japan (Noh, Kabuki,
Modern and Postmodern
Modern drama is said to date from about 1875.
Fed by revolutions in the US and France in the 18
Simultaneous to the political revolutions were revolutions in philosophy, science and religion.
Important treatises of the “modern era”
Darwin ORIGIN OF THE SPECIES
Karl Marx DAS KAPITALSlide4
first expression of a modern theatre was a theatre of experimentationSlide7
Realism as a reaction against
sought to develop an aesthetic that was not abstract, rather, one that was “like life.”Slide8
The romantics and
sought art that was like life or an idealized life. The realists sought to present art that was life.Slide9
As a form of artistic expression, it was tested in the late 19
and early 20
centuries in all aspects of expression and remains an enormously significant style today.Slide10
Objectify society in an effort to study
Thus realism adhered to the scientific method
REALISM WAS CONCEIVED AS A LABORATORYSlide11
Early on, the proscenium stage was modified to accommodate a new form of scenery – THE BOX SET and the aesthetic became the “theatre of the fourth wall removed”
THE LOWER DEPTHS AT
Moscow art theatre (1902)Slide12
TECHNIQUES OF REALISM
PRESENT THE AUDIENCE WITH “EVIDENCE” AND PERMIT EACH SPECTATOR TO ARRIVE AT HIS OR HER OWN CONCLUSIONS...
Woody Harrelson in a realistic production of
Tennessee William’s THE NIGHT OF THE IGUANA
PIONEERS OF REALISM
Henrik Ibsen, 1828-1906
A Doll’s House (pictured)
An Enemy of the PeopleSlide14
in 1897 to stage realistic dramaSlide15
by Eugene Brieux (1858-1932)
was a realistic play about syphilis
day to treat the question
in a frank manner, showing that the most dangerous phase of venereal disease is ignorance and fear, and that if treated openly and intelligently, it is perfectly curable. Brieux also emphasizes the importance of kindness and consideration for those who contract the affliction, since it has nothing to do with what is commonly called evil, immorality, or impurity
GERHARD HAUPTMANN (1862-1946)
The Weavers, 1892Slide17
the sea gull
to the cast at the
art theatre (1896)Slide21
He created deeply complex relationships with his characters. As an example see this scene from THE THREE SISTERS (1901)
I have the honor to introduce myself, my name is
. I am very, very glad to be in your house at last.
Please sit down. We are delighted to see you.
glad I am, how glad I am!
there are three of you sisters. I
little girls. I don't remember your faces, but that your father, Colonel
, had three little girls I remember perfectly, and saw them with my own eyes. How time passes! Hey-ho, how it passes
Moscow? You have come from Moscow?
. Your father was in command of a battery there, and I was an officer in the same brigade. [
MASHA] Your face, now, I seem to remember.
don't remember you.
you are Olga
, the eldest. . . . And you are
. . . . And you are Irina, the youngest. . . .
come from Moscow?
. I studied in Moscow.
used to visit you in Moscow. . .
CHEKHOV’S REALISTIC STYLE
Although Masha and
will become lovers in the course of the action, they are seen here as distant and engaging in the type of small talk that people engage in real life.
This type of scene required a realistic form of acting to develop the Subtext of the scene which is not explicit in the text. THE REALISTIC DRAMA gave rise to a realistic style of acting as practiced at the Moscow Art Theatre.Slide24
DRIVING MISS DAISY
Realistic plays do not necessarily
equire realistic scenery.Slide25
Emile Zola (1840-1902)Slide26
Naturalism vs. realism
To proponents of naturalism, behavior was predetermined by environment
Social ills were not changeable
They sought to express art as a “slice of life...”
...and sought to eliminate every vestige of dramatic convention. Zola’s manifesto declared that “all the great successes of the stage are triumphs over convention.”
These ideas are clearly expressed in three works...Slide27
This domestic “tragedy” plays out in real time and recounts
the seduction of a Count’s daughter by her father’s groom.
The play ends with the Miss Julie’s suicide and the groom’s
return to this duties. The play dates from the same time period
as Ibsen’s A DOLL’S HOUSE and marked a turning point in
Strindberg’s style of writing.Slide28
Film Trailer for 2014 film of MISS JULIESlide29
LA RONDE (1900)
love as a bitterly comic merry-go-
round and was deemed immoral by American censors and
banned from entering the country for many years.
It is told
in ten sketches in which an interconnecting group of lovers changes partners until the liaisons come full
Nicole Kidman was featured in the English Version of
LA RONDE by
LONG DAYS JOURNEY INTO NIGHT (1956)
American playwrights influenced by realism and naturalism
Miller’s DEATH OF A SALESMANSlide33
as WILLY LOMAN (1999)Slide34
Maeterlinck’s THE BLUEBIRD, 1896Slide35
Tenants of symbolism
Reaction against realism which expressed outward reality
Focus upon inner realities that cannot be directly perceived
Replace reality with poetry, imagery, novelty, fantasy,
, profundity, audacity, charm and superhuman magnitude
Purity of vision rather than accuracy of observation was the symbolists’ aimSlide36
Proponents of symbolism in
Maurice Maeterlinck (1862-1949)
Paul Fort (1870-1960)Slide37
Defined (in part) by competition between competing organizations
Their theatre’s “war” brought writers like Arthur
, Maurice Maeterlinck and Edgar Allen Poe to the stage and artists like Pierre Bonnard and Maurice DenisSlide38
Paul fort produced
A contemporary production of
WORKS OF SYMBOLISM
UBU ROI (1898)
a dream play
Diane Paulus, 2006Slide41
WHEN WE DEAD AWAKEN (1899)
A Swedish production, 2008Slide42
A new style of production
Realistic directors like Antoine and Stanislavsky were challenged by scores of new directors. Notable among them was another director from the Moscow Art Theatre...
The Magnificent Cuckold
THE ERA OF “ISMS”
...ALL ARE FORMS OF STYLIZED THEATRE
The Cabinet of Dr.
UBU ROI (1896)Slide46
O’Neill’s THE HAIRY APE (1921)Slide47
Elmer Rice THE ADDING MACHINE (1923)Slide48
Six Characters in Search of an Author – 1921
by Luigi PirandelloSlide49
Theatre of cruelty
JET OF BLOOD (1925)
The Theatre and Its Double
THEATRE OF THE ABSURDSlide52
1928 - 2016
The Sandbox, 1959Slide56
Theatre of alienation (epic theatre)
GOOD PERSON OF SETZUAN (1943)Slide58
MOTHER COURAGE - 1939Slide59
COMEDY OF CONTEMPORARY MANNERS
Barefoot in the park (1963)Slide63
The Dinner Party
BLOODY BLOODY ANDREW JACKSON (2010)Slide70
created & performed by Mike
directed by Jean-Michele Gregory
for ages 14 and up. Running Time: Approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes (no intermission)Slide71
a play about global warming
Brooklyn Academy of MusicSlide72
THE CURIOUS INCIDENT OF THE DOG IN THE NIGHT-TIMESlide73
A View from the bridge
Today’s theatre is and can be anything and everything. As styles merge, blend, morph, reconfigure—all theatre remains essentially one of two forms:
Individual artists will continue to explore old and new forms so long as audiences come.