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Theatre History 2
Terms in this set (34)
Lars Schmidt (1917-2009)
Theatre producer in Europe, produced many of Tennessee Williams' plays. Produced best translations of plays and sold them to appropriate theatres. Would put the same play in multiple theatres to create a talk about it. Schmidt contributed to the initial development of the phenomenon of the global musical; that is, productions staged in similar and easily recognizable versions worldwide that are heavily dependent on external sponsorship and aggressively marketed with souvenirs, such as coffee mugs, posters, CDs etc. Would suggest a play be cancelled as soon as the revenue drop below 25%.
Post WWII Era (1940-1950s)
Postwar Era (late 40s and 50s) is thought to be a very conservative era, however we now have these minority groups starting to form.The Holocaust, Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Raising of the Iron Curtain. People are haunted by these issues.
Lorraine Hansberry (1930-1965)
A Raisin in the Sun (1959)
Critical success, reached out to a white liberal audience, quite controversial. Criticism (specifically feminism) says Realism depicts the world "as it is" therefore unchangeable. However some minorities see value in depicting themselves "as they are" -> the historical burden of realism being the prerogative of white, rich, males.
Theatre of the Absurd
Life is void of any meaning. We are born we die, and in between we throw nuclear bombs on people. - A writer's theatre, ironic because they work against literature and language. No logical plot, no cause and effect, no logical ending. Language no longer works as a tool for rational communication. Shows the empty existence of the bourgeois. Repetitive, monotonous. Requires good performers to pull off this style and make it entertaining and to bring out farcical humorous elements.
Absurdist -> How French Theatre reacts to the anxieties of the postwar era
Samuel Beckett (1906-1989)
Waiting for Godot (1954) -> No specific time, no specific place, two tramps waiting for Godot who never comes. Appeals to postwar sensibility, performers are really entertaining
Bert Lahr -> played Estragon in the original Broadway production in 1956. Second attempt in America, had training in clowning, his performance led to success
Germany's response to the postwar era. Brecht ->Life of Galileo (1937)
Fear and Misery of the Third Reich (1938)
Mother Courage and Her Children (1941)
The Good Person of Szechwan (1943)
The Caucasian Chalk Circle (1948)
The Alienation Effect
The alienation effect Achieving stage effects that make the audience see the familiar in a new and strange way to critically reflect on it. The ultimate goal for audiences to take a step back and think about other ways to organize our world.
Bertolt Brecht (1898-1956)
Brecht believes our world is changeable. People and politics can change. Two classes struggling, one can take over and create something new. Brecht wants to tell a story, but one that makes people take a political distance and think, "If I was in this position how would I react"
He does not want the audience to empathize with the characters; he wants to keep them awake and critically distant in order to think about what was happening. Anything that would be realistic design would suck audiences into the action. Brecht would often just use signs to suggest the location. Making it clear it is theatre and he wants you to think about what is going on.
a gesture during the rehearsal process an actor discovers to capture the character's social attitude and world views. Carefully rehearsed and practiced.
Mother Courage and Her Children (1949)
Gestus -> Silent Scream (Pain, but silent because she still benefits from the war)
Gestus -> Every time she got paid, she would bite the coin to make sure it was real.
Max Frisch (1911-1991)
The Fire Raisers, The Firebugs (1958)
a Swiss playwright and novelist, regarded as highly representative of German-language literature after World War II. In his creative works Frisch paid particular attention to issues relating to problems of human identity, individuality, responsibility, morality and political commitment.
"Struggle to come to terms with the past"
Peter Weiss (1916-1982)
Writer: Marat/Sade, 1963
The Investigation, 1965
Peter Brook (born 1925)
Directed Marat/Sade in 1964 then the Movie adaptation, 1967. Worked in Royal Shakespeare. Late in his career wanted to be an Avant Garde theatre director. Was influenced by Artaud.
Holy Theatre -> Based on myth and mythology. Trying to discover the deeper parts of human nature, the truth in myths and in ourselves.
Antonin Artaud (1896-1948)
His writings weren't discovered until the late 50s and 60s. Had many failed plays, biggest impacts is his essays. Launches a full attack on realism as a genre and psychological realism as a form of acting. He doesn't like that it relies so much on language. He was more interested in spectacle and the physical affect of theatre on the audience. Wanted to attack the French bourgeois, their taste in culture, language, art, and theatre. "Life is essentially cruel, we all struggle to survive..." -> It's about the suffering of human existence. Wanted to confront the audience with their own inner dangers. Bringing out the cruelty within us. Crime, erotic obsession, savageness, fantasies. Total emotional and physical involvement of the audience. Saw cleavage between body and spirit and between civilized culture and dangerous forces of the heart.
Marquis de Sade (1740-1814)
Wrote erotic fiction while he was in jail, strong philosophical and political presence.
Justine or The Misfortunes of Virtue
Philosophy in the Bedroom
The 120 Days of Sodom
Jean-Paul Marat (1743-1793)
Jacobin. Confined to a bath for the last few years of his life. Murdered.
Richard Schechner (born 1934)
The Performance Group. Dionysus in 69 (1969) -> Dionysus in 69 is very conservatory in regards to gender representation
Incorporates the spectator into the performance physically. Explores new performance spaces. Re-arranges the space to facilitate physical interaction. Multiple sites and simultaneous actions.
Feminist Performance Art in the 1960's and 1970's
Identity and autobiography, The body, Power
Interior Scroll (1975) "I thought of the vagina in many ways- physically, conceptually, as a sculptural form, an architectural referent, the source of sacred knowledge, ecstasy, birth passage, transformation."
Simone de Beauvoir (1908-1986)
"Representation of the world, like the world itself, is the work of men; they describe it from their own point of view, which they confuse with absolute truth."
- Le Deuxieme Sexe (The Second Sex) 1949
Laura Mulvey (born 1941)
The Male Gaze. Everyone, male and female, has been trained to view the world with a male point of view. Man = Origin of the gaze. Woman = Object of the gaze. Triple objectification of the woman (film): The gaze of the male protagonist, the gaze of the cameraman, and the gaze of the spectator.
The pleasure of looking.
Cut Piece -> 1964 Performed in Japan, New York
A political philosophy, unites theory and activism
Analyses the economic and cultural consequences of colonialism.
Economic Processes: Neo-colonialism, global trade structures, World Bank, International Monetary Fund (IMF), G8
Cultural Processes: Stereotypical representations of "the Other" to define and secure white, western identity.
Edward Said (1935-2003)
"The Other" is 'necessary' to give white people a sense of identity.
Post Colonialism Feminism
Feminist and Race, often white women's work opportunities come from "other" race women.
Susan-Lori Parks (Born 1963)
The American Play, 1994
bell hooks (born 1952)
Black Women Studies or Black Feminism
Ain't I a Woman? Black Woman and Feminism, 1981
Black Looks: Race and Representation, 1992
Teaching Critical Thinking: Practical Wisdom, 2010
Third world woman
Sexually repressed, no control over her own body, nurturing. Allows the white woman to be everything the third world woman is not.
Gayatri Spivak (born 1942)
"Can the Subaltern Speak?", 1988
"White men saving brown woman from brown men"
Chandra Talpade Mohanty (Born 1955)
"Under Western Eyes" 1984
Feminism Without Borders: Decolonizing Theory, Practicing Solidarity, 2003.
Radical Theatre in the 1960s+
Rebellion to The Cold War and Vietnam, adjusting to globalization, awakened a socio-political consciousness, eager to help the oppressed.
He pitted the theater of the mind against that of the body, Brechtian idealism against Artaudian nihilism, fighting for a cause against causeless-ness. Moreover, Weiss incorporates Brechtian alienation effects, as well as Artaudian shock tactics, into his script, matching form to content in a skillful dialectic of aesthetics. The acting follows the same formula - social gestures and character abstraction for a Brechtian effect, total and passionate embodiment of characters involved ingrotesque/degrading situations for an Artaudian effect. Sade has to win because he wrote Marat's lines.
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