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Terms in this set (74)

1 . A sequence of facial gestures, hand operations, body positions and movements that are taken from life. When used with imagination by the actor, a pantomime can tell an entire story without a word being spoken. In acting, expressive movement of the body; called also stage action, stage business. Silent drama, mime, dumb show, as part of a stage performance or as a performance complete in itself, often spectacular and with dance and musical accompaniment. To mime, to act silently.
2. Roman Pantomime - Originally danced by one performer, who played all the parts, indicating each by a mask with a closed mouth. The story, which was usually serious and drawn from mythology, and accompanied by musicians and a chorus
3. The most popular new form in the eighteenth century was pantomime. It came into being around 171 and was perfected by John Rich, manager of one of the patent companies. The pantomime was composed of dancing, silent mimicry, and some spoken passages performed to musical accompaniment and set against elaborate scenery and special effects. Typically, comic and serious scenes alternated. The comic plot usually involved Harlequin. Normally the serious plot was derived from a mythological or historical subject already known to the audience. Pantomimes served as afterpieces to full length plays.
4. In British terminology, a spectacular entertainment, first (early 18th century ( a silent harlequinade, then a speaking harlequinade, later a burlesque and extravaganza; later still and now an olio of acrobatics, clowning, tableaux, songs, music, dances, and dialogue (usually comic), with gorgeous settings, and a plot drawn from a nursery or other fantastic popular tale. Since the 1820's it has usually opened during the Christmas season; hence such designations as Christmas Pantomime.