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physical space and also a art form

3 categories of art

literary, visual, and performing

literary art

novels, short stories, and poetry

visual art

painting, sculpture, architecture, and photography. focuses on sight and touch


theater, dance, opera, and music. takes up time and space

elements of theater

audience, performers, text or script, director, theater space, and design elements


written form of the play. mostly dialogue


the person who rehearses the performers and coordinates the work of the designers and others to make sure the production is cohesive

visual aspects

costumes, lighting, and some form of scenic background and sound


having to do with any activity- political, economic, artistic, cultural- in which nations and people around the world relate and interact


repetitions of a scene in film

aesthetic distance

appreciation of artistic event. audience feels "safe" they feel emotionally comfortable

willing suspension of disbelief

we want so much to believe in the reality of what is happening onstage that we willingly put aside all literal and practical considerations in order to enter into the world of the drama. as an audience member i will stop disbelieving as an audience member

homogeneous audience

audience members come mostly from similar backgrounds and experiences. examples would be a college production audience would mostly have college students of the same age


audience of many ethnic and social backgrounds of all ages


someone who observes theater and then analyzes and comments on it


find fault or to understand and appraise


usually works for a newspaper, a magazine, or a tv station, and reports on what has occurred at a theater event

auteur director

usually attempts to present his or her own version of a dramatic work, not necessarily that of the playwright

descriptive criticism

criticism that attempts to describe as clearly and accurately as possible what is happening in a performance

prescriptive criticism

criticism that offers advice and sometimes suggests rules for what should be done in theater


you feel exactly the same feeling as the character in the play


you feel bad for the character at all

playwrights must

select the specific subject, determine the focus and emphasis, establish a purpose, develop dramatic structure, create dramatic characters, establish point of view


order in which actions happen


the collision of opposition of persons or forces in a drama that gives rise to dramatic action

opposed forces

conflicting characters have clear strong goals or objectives but there also must be a sort of balance between them

climatic structure

contained, intense, structure in which little time passes until the climax occurs

episodic structure

cover an extended period of time, sometimes many years and ranges over a number of locations. it can jump from 3 years then jump to 2 years

stock characters

familiar traits and actions are always predictable. they are stereotypical characters

dominant trait

one aspect of such a character dominates, making for an unbalanced, often comic personality

minor characters

characters who play a small part in the overall action


the leading character in a play, the chief or outstanding figure in action


the character who opposes the protagonist

opening scene

establishes the setting, a conflict, opposing forces, and some characters


a theater that provides space for performances but is is not owned by a specific group of actors/actresses


often defined as the high point in the action or the final and most significant crisis in the action


secondary plot that reinforces or runs parallel to the major plot in an episodic play


point within a play when the action reaches an important confrontation or takes a critical turn


that which delays or prevents the achieving of a goal by a character. creates complication and conflict

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