- Slides: 24
What is Theatre?
Some definitions of theatre
Some definitions of theatre John Cage - Musician • 1952 composition 4′ 33″ • Theatre “is something that engages both the eye and the ear”
Peter Brook – The Empty Space • “I can take any empty space and call it a bare stage. A man walks across this empty space while someone else is watching him, an this is all that is needed for an act of theatre to be engaged. ”
Some definitions of theatre “Theatre is a unique live event that involves actors and audience that happens at a particular time, that takes place in the present tense has a predetermined structure, that uses understood conventions to communicate through all five senses, • and that has a lasting impact on the audience. “ • 10 Traits of Theatre pg 5 • • •
Live Event Live Theatre • Theatre differs from other arts in that it is live. • Differs from recorded media like film • Theatre is an experience we live through • Tension between what is rehearsed and what will really happen • Each performance is unique
Actors • Thespis – the first actor – 534 or 535 BC, Thespis rode on to the back of a wooden cart and recited poetry as if he was one of the characters. – What word do we have today that comes from Thespis?
Actors • Thespis – the first actor Thespian= actor
Audience • Without an audience, the actor’s performance is a rehearsal. • Audiences are participants in theatre act
Particular time and place Prefer – “Space” • Theatre can be a building • Theatre can happen in places not normally called theatres (Street theatre) • Theatre space can be any space • Theatre happens at a certain time that the audience does not control – Western theatre = show time on ticket – Some cultures, theatre happens when the performers feel the time is right
Predetermined Structure • Plays give an order – Linear Structure – “Beginning, Middle, End” – Cinematic Structure “Pulp Fiction” – Contextual – “Meaning of Life” – “Experiential” – Not in the book – Art museum, website, Site- specific performance
Impro? • What about impro theatre – – Who’s Line Is It Anyway – Does impro have a predetermined structure?
Impro? • Impro Structure
Impro? • Impro Structure • Order of games – Play list – Like an album or a playlist – Order is important
Impro? Impro Structure • Order of games – Play list – Like an album or a playlist – Order is importan • Games – Games have structures and rules – Basketball – 4 quarters, limited time, limited players
Is Impro really improvised? • Lots of rehearsal • Impro rules – Accepting offers, • Structured by personality – “Do you know what your friend will say in a given circumstance? ”
Conventions • Conventional People?
Conventions • Agreed rules of the game • Rules establish over time and repeated use • Examples?
Theatre Conventions • • Curtain call Willing suspension of disbelief The Fourth Wall Clapping Virtual time and place within the performance Conventions are informed by culture. Conventions start as exceptions – Lights – Curtains – Cinema ads
Five Senses • • • Hearing Seeing Smelling Tasting Feeling
Lasting Impact • • • When an artist dies, what is left behind? Painter Sculpture Musician Film actor Theatre actor
Why we value theatre? • Watch how others behave in situations • What motivates people to behave in a particular way • Learn how we would behave • Mirror to society • Learn respect for different backgrounds – Ethnic – Gender – Class
What about you? • Etudes – Introduction on message board • A little about your self, interests, major, etc? • What do you hope to gain from this class?