What are the six elements of a play according to Aristotle?
Plot, Character, Thought, Language, Music, Spectacle
the structure/organization of the action of a play. Plot is what gives a play unity.
the persons that are created to perform the action of a play
the ideas in a play (can be generated in a number of different ways)
the playwright's choice of words in a play
has been very important in the theatre of most cultures, and in many cases it has been vital. Music may express heightened emotion.
the visual elements called for in a play. (scenery, costumes, props, lighting, actor physicality, and movement)
organization of a play in which the action progresses forward and sequentially in time
the central element of causal plot; two forces working against each other.
structure of a script organized by a cause and effect relationship of events; event A leads to even B, which leads to C, and so forth. Most thrillers and comedies on film and television of a linear and causal structure.
information that is necessary to understand the play, but is not a part of the dramatized action. Although exposition may be introduced throughout the play, a great deal of info is typically conveyed in the first few scenes.
in a causal plot, an event that destroys the uneasy balance of the play's beginning and sets off the major conflict
in a causal plot, small units of action following the inciting incident that build in emotional intensity to the climax of the play.
the emotional high point of the action in a causal plot; critical stage of the conflict.
drop in emotional intensity following the climax. Typically, loose ends are tied up for the audience and balance in restored.
written descriptions of physocal or emotional action or physical appearance.
words spoken by the characters in a play
secondary lines of action in a causal plot that are entwined with the main story/plot. Conflict different from that of the major line of action is developed.
an element of causal plot; occurs when something important is found, learned, or realized during the action of the play.
In a causal plot, when a line of action veers around suddenly to its opposite. Ex: the prime suspect in a murder investigation turns up dead and the detective must look for another solution to the crime.
the central character of a play
who or what opposes the central character
language similar to everyday speech; not verse
poetry; heightened language that may have a rhyme scheme or just a specific rhythm. For many centuries, stage dialogue was written in verse.
What are the four types of dramatic genre?
Tragedy, Tragicomedy, Comedy, Melodrama
a dramatic genre of plays that is serious and ends unhappily. Aristotle identified magnitude (importance) as a chief attribute of tragedy and noted that it evoked the emotions of pity and fear in the audience.
a dramatic genre emphasizing humor, typically taking an objective (rather than emotional) approach to life.
Situation Comedy (Sitcom)
a subgenre of comedy based on the humorous qualities of the situation in which the characters find themselves
a type of situation comedy that emphasizes broad physical action (slapstick humor)
Comedy of Character
a subgenre of comedy in which the action is driven by the eccentricities of its major figure
Comedy of Idea
a subgenre of comedy organized around thought
Comedy of Manners
a subgenre of comedy that explores the behavior of a particular segment of society; characters frequently find that their own desires are at odds with social expectations
a subgenre of comedy that follows the attempts of lovers to get together. More often produces a feeling of well-being and sympathy at the end, rather than strong laughs.
a dramatic genre in which tragic and comic tendencies seem equally mixed
a dramatic genre featuring a conflict between good and bad characters, fast paced action, a spectacular climax, and poetic justice.
term used by Aristotle to describe the audience's emotional release at the end of a tragedy.
a device typical at the end of a melodrama: Good is rewarded, evil is punished.
the author, or crafter, of the play. Term appeared during the Middle Ages when the word "wright" was used to identify a craftsperson.
payments to the playwright made by the producing organization each time a play is produced.
regulations that protect the intellectual property of the playwright. equires the permission of the author to put on one of his/her productions or publications of a play. Royalties are paid to the playwright for each performance or printed copy sold.
works published before 1923 that do not have copyright regulations.
iprov comedy that originated in Italy sometime before 1568. Commedia actors played conventional characters (some os which were masked) and planned the scenario and comic business ahead of time, but developed specific dialogue and action as the show progressed in front of an audience.
broad comic action; the term originated with commedia dellárte actors and their use of a long, flat paddle with a flap that literally made a loud slapping sound when used for comic beatings.
a systematic approach to playwriting and production based on interpretations of classical Greek and Roman models of plays and theory. Neoclassical prinicples were developed in Renaissance Italy and popularized in 17th century France. Principles of neoclassicism: Time, Place, Action
a neoclassical concept that established that theatrical events should be reality based (events that could really occur in life)
changeable scenery for specific plays (tragedies, comedies, pastoral tragicomedies). Appeared as early as 1508 and standardized approaches to such scenery were popularized by Sebastian Serlio. Ex: Wings, flats.
invented by the Italians, a large open arch that marks the primary division between audience and performance space in a proscenium space. The proscenium arch frames the action of the play for the audience and limits the view of backstage areas.
set at an angle. Early proscenium theatres featured a raked stage: the stage was elevated much higher at the back of the stage (upstage) than closer to the stage (downstage). Modern designers sometimes build a raked stage for a particular production as part of the design concept. When the audience area is raked, the seating is elevated toward the back of the house to facilitate seeing over the rows in front.
group of influential, educated Renaissance playwrights.
Greek philosopher used the word "catharsis" in reference to the purpose of a tragedy. He also identified six elements of a play: plot, character, thought, language, music, and spectacle. He also identified discovery and reversal.
a prolific playwright widely produced by resident theatres. His plays are popular both in avant-garde circles as well as with audience members who have a keen interest in new interpretations of classical theatre. Many of his plays are radical and fully modernized.
established in 1920, an organization to safeguard writer's interests. Offers a standard contract for commercial and non-profit theatre.
theatre where Shakespeare's company of actors worked primarily
greatest dramatist of all time
Informations about character is given in three ways:
1)what characters say about themselves
2)what others say about hem
3)what the characters do
Which type of language was used first by playwrights?
How are playwrights paid?
Italian Contributions to Theatre:
Improv comedy, proscenium arch, perspective painting, and changeable scenery
What are the goals of Neoclassicism?
Reality, morality, and universality
(Verisimilitude) theatrical events based on reality
neoclassicism demanded that plays should teach a moral lesson
decorum, this universality of character that led playwrights to draw characters according to current notions of appropriate behavior, values, and language, in terms of age, sex, social class, occupation, and economic condition
What are the three neoclassical unities?
Time, place, action
the action of the play should take place in 24 hours or less
the action should occur in one location
no subplots unless fully integrated with the central conflict