28 results for "Theater Essays"

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Theatre Today Essay

Words: 1052 Length: 3 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 42104414

Theatre Today & Theatre for Me

Theatre, as a genre of creative expression, is still very much valid in the 21st century. It originated thousands of years ago, and still draws crowds in the 21st century around the world. Many of the classic plays of many cultures are still performed, as well as adaptations of other forms (such as films, songs, etc.) are transformed into plays that interest and captivate audiences. Of the plays we read in the course this term, I was able to find value in all of them, but I did not personally enjoy all of the plays.

Theatre today is sometimes based on historical events and figures, as well as new takes on old ideas in modern forms. Many plays are period pieces, and in many cities, such as New York City and London, there is a proliferation of one-person plays (one man show, or a one woman show). Theatre today connects audiences across cultures and time, and this is one aspect of theatre that appeals to me. I appreciate theatre that is stylized and inventive. Though I am interested in classic plays, many young people and young adults do not have the same tastes or even have the attention span or interest to sit through a play by Chekov or Shaw, for example. Therefore, theatre for me, the theatre that interests me the most, is theatre that is both modern and classic, that draws older crowds and draws younger crowds.

A friend from another college was in a production of "Arcadia," so I was already familiar with this play. Tom Stoppard has a distinctive and famous style when it comes to his writing, but overall this play did not speak to me personally. Of course, I was interested in the play by Albee because he is a notable playwright, so I was able to maintain interest based on my previous knowledge of his works.

"Doubt" and "Wit" were the most interesting plays in the class for me. These plays truly represented what theatre is today and what theatre is for me. There was a synergy of elements in these plays that truly interested me. The characters were very interesting and relatable. I additionally enjoyed the subject matter. "Wit" was an amazing take on the experience of a woman with cancer -- there are many women living with and dying from cancer. Unless…… [Read More]

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Theatre An Art And Essay

Words: 1078 Length: 3 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 67077387

Most of Fugard's plays stand as a proof of reality reflected in theatre as an art of real life. Athol Fugard's play My Children! My Africa reflects a cruel reality of his times: South Africa's dehumanizing system of apartheid laws that denied freedom to blacks. Worried that his country would never live in peace, Fugard wrote the play in hopes that the polarization between blacks and whites would end and world will know peace, freedom and understanding between each other. The play is based on a true incident and gives good insights into the situation in South Africa.

My Children, My Africa" is inspired by real events and describes a teacher's attempt (Mr. M) to bring understanding between two of his students: one is a middle class white girl - Isabel - and the other one is a brilliant black boy - Thami - who grew up in Coketown ghetto. The path toward understanding each other is marked by pain, but in the end brings respect and acceptance between the two of them.

This humane and dedicated teacher who believes in the power of ideas, not stones, inspires the minds of the enthusiastic white schoolgirl and black schoolboy and changes their lives forever. The play is a "timeless and powerfully poetic work about race, justice, fundamentalism, freedom, and self-knowledge," themes that we can find in many plays performed on theatre stages around the world.

Watching a play performing on a stage can determine us reconsider, doubt or confirm our opinion, goals and philosophy of life, searching new answer to new questions. Theatres are aimed to create values in society, educate audience and encourage positive social change. In the effort to react imaginatively to current events, theatre productions often acquire subtle connections to current political and social issues. Fugard was fascinated about "the living experience" in plays performed in theatre: the actual, the real, the immediate, there right before our eyes, like a scene from real life. A real good play is the one which creates…… [Read More]

Fugard, Athol. My Children! My Africa!

http://www.wilmatheater.org/seasons/2006-2007%20Shows/Africa/OpenStages_MyAfrica.pdf.Retrieved on December 14, 2006
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Theatre Women In Sitcoms The Essay

Words: 1239 Length: 4 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 98142066

Towards the end of the play, after Argan finds out about the intentions of his wife and those of his daughter, he agrees for Angelique to marry Cleante, the man she really loves, as long as he agrees to become a doctor. Argan's brother has an even better idea by proposing that Argan be made a doctor himself. To this end, he calls some gypies that perform dances and rituals that make Argan a doctor. According to some versions of the play, during these manifestations, the patient suffers from a heart attack and dies.

"The imaginary invalid" is a highly intriguing play, of recurrent notoriety and secular popularity due to the multitude of themes approached. Some of the more popular of these themes include the greed of the principal character, the rivalry between the daughters and the step mother or the pursuit of financial gains.

Greed is one important element that influences the relationships between people. As it has been mentioned before, Argan is a rich man, who affords the services of doctors and apothecaries, but who still pays his bills only in half and complains that he is being robbed. Despite the fact that he disposes of the financial means to pay for his medical services, he still withholds payment, revealing how greed influences the relationships between people.

And furthermore, the patient wishes a doctor in his family -- and the doctor's family with medical expertise -- to also attend on him upon every request. These services would not only be delivered for free, but also at any time solicited by the hypochondriac. The son in law, his father and his uncle would as such become the medical staffs to attend to the patient for free, around the clock.

And in order to attain this objective, Argan is wiling to sacrifice his daughter's happiness, to such…… [Read More]

Works Cited:
Gaines, J.F. The Moliere encyclopedia. Greenwood Publishing Group. 2002

Roach, C. The perfect housewife: sitcoms of the 1950s. Yahoo Voices. 2009. http://voices.yahoo.com/the-perfect-housewife-sitcoms-1950s-3775574.html accessed on December 10, 2012
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Theatre English Speaking Versions Of Hamlet Vs European Essay

Words: 2617 Length: 8 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 22081107


English-speaking versions of Hamlet vs. European versions

The many contemporary interpretations of Shakespeare enacted on the modern stage underline the fact that Shakespeare was a playwright for the ages, not simply a man of his own time. However, in the ways in which Shakespeare has been adapted to modernity, it becomes apparent that modern directors are just as intent upon revealing their own personal preoccupations as well as revealing the nuances of Shakespeare's plays. This can be seen when comparing British interpretations with European and other non-English language stagings of Hamlet. Although the most obvious difference between these two categories is that British interpretations are in the original language of Shakespeare while European stagings are enacted in translation, the difference runs far deeper. English productions tend to emphasize the psychological, internal conflict of Hamlet and view the play in terms of its psychological drama. In contrast, European interpretations of Hamlet have stressed the social dimensions of living in a Denmark that is ruled by a murderous king with a secret, a place which Hamlet calls a prison. Shifting attitudes towards 'truth' can be seen in the representation of 'truth' and theatricality in Hamlet in all nations' productions, but the individualism of the English-speaking world has tended to deemphasize the political aspects of the work.

It should be noted that in its original form, the elements of Hamlet had both a political and a personal aspect. Take, for instance, Hamlet's father's ghost, In Protestant Elizabethan England, the idea of a 'ghost' would have been a forbidden concept. "The ghost presents an interesting double bind for the audience, and defines a new type of theatricality. The ghost, in whom the public does not believe -- belief would be forbidden both religiously and morally -- achieves his effect only in retrospect…the ghost, in the truth of his untruth, cannot actually be doubted in the slightest." (Haverkamp 2006: 176). According to the Renaissance scholar Stephen Greenblatt, Hamlet is awash in concerns about what it meant to mourn the dead in an England that had rapidly transitioned from Catholicism to Protestantism. What did it mean to have a ghost asking for revenge in a Protestant country, coming from a purgatory that officially no longer existed? "Purgatory…was at the center of vast web of institutional rituals and customs, and these practices had been forcibly repressed by the Church of England for…… [Read More]

Dasgupta, Gautam. "Germany's Fourth Wall." Performing Arts Journal, 13. 2 (May, 1991):

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Theatre Art Essay

Words: 1343 Length: 3 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 93824753

Shape of Things:

Theatrical Convention from Class: Suspension of Disbelief -- the audience is made to believe that a man or any person for that matter could become so obsessed with a single person that they are willing to completely change themselves, including having plastic surgery and destroying their interpersonal relationships for a person whose only appeal to them is a sexual one.

Potential Convention: Given the subject matter of the play and the heightened emotions the ending portrays at least on the part of one character that I would try to have the actors deliver their dialogue and their attitudes as realistically as possible.

In the Blood:

Theatrical Convention from Class: Pathos -- the audience is meant to feel sympathy for the main character of this play and to understand her sense of desperation and her inability to find a way to preserve herself and her sense of dignity and also support her children.

Potential Convention: Due to the highly tense nature of the play, it might benefit best by containing the setting as much as possible to a single setting, such as directly inside our outside the home of the impoverished family.


Theatrical Convention from Class: The play relies heavily on singular perspective of the dying woman, namely the soliloquy and her direct discussion of her situation with the audience.

Potential Convention: Because of the isolated nature of the character and her disease, the theme of the play would be helped by having her physically isolated on the stage, such as by creating a large space between the main character and everyone else, including her doctors.

The Goat:

Theatrical Convention from Class: Satire -- the play deals with a man's relationships with a goat but this taboo could be any sexual feeling which the society considers to be inappropriate, the goat then serves the purposes of satirizing all taboo relationships and the reasons they are taboo.

Potential Convention: In order to sustain the universality of taboo, it would be a good idea to use not an actual sheep but an apparently artificial substitute.

The playwright's job is not only to tell a story but also to use the medium of the play in order to illustrate an important perspective on life to the…… [Read More]

Albee, E. (2000). The Goat or Who is Sylvia? Overlook TP.

Edson, M. (1995). Wit. Faber & Faber.
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Theatre Art Essay

Words: 1594 Length: 5 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 19368416

Blood by Suzan-Lori Sparks expands on the main theme of society's unfair disregard for its people of low condition in general, for women, and for adulterers. Hester La Negrita, the protagonist, is an African-American woman who struggles to survive in poverty along with her five base-born children. The family's outcast status is portrayed as a direct inducer and accelerator of emotional suffering, poverty, lack of education, and sexual exploitation.

(A) From a structural perspective, In the Blood is constructed in two acts and nine scenes, employing a linear plotline (Rush, 2005). In this sense, the play debuts with the equilibrium of Hester striving to provide for her children in meager conditions, the inciting incident represented by the suggestion to seek help from the available former lovers and fathers of her children, the major dramatic question of whether or not she will attain it, the developing action as Hester approaches Reverend D. And Chilli with this intention and is openly rejected by both, the climax when she violently murders her oldest son, and finally the resolution and renewed state of equilibrium as the tragic hero is imprisoned and can no longer provide for her children.

(A) The literary connection to Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter is traced through the main characters' identical first name, a recurrent surfacing of the letter A, and also in a clearly visible emphasis on woman's reputation and how mothering bastard children negatively impacts it. It is unspeakably moving, even shocking, to witness the tragedy of a single mother who only wants to care for her children, and is met with cruel shunning or sexual labeling by the other characters.

(B) Histrionics are employed in the silent interactions which occur repeatedly between Hester and the others, and also in the five monologues. Whereas the former serves to accentuate turns in conversation or imply certain meanings, the dramatic confessions are poetically revelatory as they provide crucial insight into the hero's past and connection with the other characters. In addition, the elaborate confessions convey the characters' culpability (B) as faulty…… [Read More]

Bailin, D. (2006). "Our Kind: Albee's Animals in Seascape and the Goat Or, Who Is Sylvia?." The Journal of American Drama and Theatre, Vol. 18, No. 1.

Putnam, R.D. (2000). Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community. New York: Simon & Schuster.
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English French Theatre Similarities And Essay

Words: 1450 Length: 5 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 89298775

The machines were used to create vertical and horizontal movements which had not been done before. In other words, a god could be pictured using the machine as floating down onto the stage, or boats moving across it. Night or dawn could appear, or ghosts (Lawrenson 92). Most of these machine-plays were produced at the Theatre du Marais. There is a difference here, too. The French machine plays reached the public, whereas the English masques of the early century were performed mainly for royalty. Certainly the stage sets for court ballets and opera were more elaborate and special than the public designs since they were subsidized by the royal coffers.

Both English and French theatre took over the new Italian techniques for changing scenery. The French theatre abandoned triangular prisms used in conjunction with painted backdrops. At the beginning, these were painted simultaneously and dropped over or pulled back to reveal another scene (Lawrenson 85). The scenes or the built stage had all kinds of buildings: castles, fortresses, temples, palaces, mountains, prisons, gardens, terraces, tombs, forests, grottoes, town squares, landscapes, and street scenes were included. Lighting effects were used to indicate day and night, whereas in the English theatre lighting was typically done through natural light, windows, and positioning of the stage in addition to candles (see Graves). Later under the influence of Italian designers like Torelli, the use of flats and prisms allowed the scenery to change (Brockett and Hildy 197). This was the development of the flat wings that slid in grooves in the Baroque theatre. It was a "scenery changing system that differed from the angled wings and revolving wooden prisms . . . This new scenery consisted of a series of flat batten frames, covered with painted canvas and sliding sideways in grooves" (Berthold 420). Different aspects of the wings could be displayed to the audience, giving the impression of a scene change. This innovation increased the spectacle since…… [Read More]

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Influence Of Stanislavsky Outside Theatre Essay

Words: 1909 Length: 6 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 58451423


Constantin Stanislavsky is the father of modern acting theory. His theories which he extols in his four books, My Life in Art (1924), An Actor Prepares (1936), Building a Character (1941), and Creating a Role (1961) have had an unparalleled effect on actors and acting instructors throughout the world. Acting theorists such as Vsevelod Meyerhold, Uta Hagen, and Bertold Brecht have all taken his theories into account while developing their own. Indeed, entire movements in world drama have been in part inspired by the work of Stanislavsky.

But what of his influence on Russia? During Stanislavsky's life and his career Russia went through many changes. Two major events in Russian history would determine the fate of theatre and as a result Stanislavsky. The first was the failed revolution in 1905. "The great rehearsal," Lenin called it and that's exactly what it was. The second major event was the 1917 revolution which in part turned Russia into the heart of the Soviet Union.

Konstantin Stanislavsky developed the Moscow Art Theatre in 1898. The creation of this particular theatre was important in that it differed from many of the other theatres of the time. It was a fully professional theatre organization and it emphasized new plays as opposed to older work. Stanislavsky believed that new plays would bring the theatre to life. His theatrical philosophy was that the actor was an educator and that plays were tools of education. As a result the initial work produced at the theatre was not successful. It wasn't until Stanislavsky partnered with a young playwright named Anton Chekhov that the theatre attained any commercial success.

Chekhov's first play, The Sea Gull had been performed once before at the Alexandrisky Theatre in St. Petersburg, but for reasons beyond his control the play failed. When Stanislavsky produced it at the Moscow Art Theatre it was a tremendous success. As a result, Checkov provided the theatre with three more plays, Uncle Vanya (1899), The Three Sisters (1901), and The Cherry Orchard (1904). Each of these plays had political undertones which revolved…… [Read More]

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Subscriber Importance To A Live Theatre Venue Essay

Words: 1129 Length: 3 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: 71881803

Subscriber Importance to a Live Theatre Venue

The Importance of Subscribers to a Live Theater Venue

Live theater is far different from movies and other types of venues. Unfortunately, people often do not realize that, and they take live venues for granted. When they do not see the differences or realize how live theater productions work, they do not realize the value of supporting these kinds of venues through subscriptions or sustaining memberships (Vogel, 1998). Becoming a sustaining member of a live theater venue is one of the best ways in which people who love the theater and want to support performing arts can do so, and has been for some time (American, 1966). The same is true of subscriptions, whereby people get newsletters, tickets, and other information - often in advance and at a discount compared to non-subscribers. While it may not seem significant, these types of helping hands can add up to significant money over the life of the specific play or production, and also over the life of the entire venue.

Live theater works in two ways. It can be a traveling kind of theater where the group moves from place to place with a particular production, or it can be a more static group, where the same people put on different productions throughout the season or the year. This is the most common option - especially for subscription-style services, but both options are possible. A live theater venue can also have actors and actresses that come and go, but the sustaining memberships and subscriptions are designed to support the entire theater. It may be a small group or a much larger one, but both need help and assistance if they are going to continue their productions and entertain the masses. Unlike a movie, where a great deal of money is raised to produce the project and then it is all made back when people go to see it, a live theater group works on a much tighter budget in most cases. If there are not enough tickets sold for the production, it will not be produced (Vogel, 1998). There will not be money for costumes and sets and everything that is needed.

Subscriptions and/or series subscribers provide a more consistent cash flow for…… [Read More]

American Theatre. "Theatre Facts: A Report on Performance and Potential in the American Nonprofit Theatre Based on Theatre Communications Group's Annual Fiscal Survey," April, 1966.

League of American Theatres and Producers, Inc. "Release: Broadway Business Booms into 1998," 22 December 1997.