The Elizabethan Theater. gabriella Romero

Thesis: Shakespeare made a great impact on plays now through all of his plays.

Writing: The stage and theater

Quote #1: “A public theater was a large platform that projected into the pit. This arrangement allowed the audience to watch from the front and sides. The performers, nearly surrounded by spectators, thus had close contact with most of their audience”(Lander).

Commentary: The theater was for everyone and only costed a penny to get in, everyone who payed more would be able to sit on the top.

Quote #2: “A half roof projected over the upper stage and the back part of the main stage. Atop the roof was a hut that contained machinery to produce sound effects and various special effects, such as the lowering of an actor playing a god. The underside of the hut was sometimes called the heavens. Two pillars supported the structure. The underside of the heavens was richly painted, and the interior of the theater undoubtedly had a number of other decorative features”(Lander).

Commentary: People on the top would spend a lot of money to watch a play and for people standing on the ground would only pay a penny.

Quote #3: “The structure that enclosed the courtyard of a public theater was round, square, or many-sided. In most theaters, it probably consisted of three levels of galleries and stood about 32 feet (10 meters) high. The courtyard, called the pit, measured about 55 feet (17 meters) in diameter. The stage occupied one end of the pit. For the price of admission, the poorer spectators, called groundlings, could stand in the pit and watch the show. For an extra fee, wealthier patrons could sit on benches in the galleries”(Lander).

Commentary: The stage was tall but small, it got burned down so they had to fix it, it is now a big stage and bigger than what it used to be.

Writing: Scenic Effect

Quote #4: “Unlike most modern dramas, Elizabethan plays did not depend on scenery to indicate the setting (place) of the action. Generally, the setting was unknown to the audience until the characters identified it with a few lines of dialogue. In addition, the main stage had no curtain. One scene could follow another quickly because there was no curtain to close and open and no scenery to change. The lack of scenery also allowed the action to flow freely from place to place, as in modern motion pictures. The action of Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra, for example, shifts smoothly and easily back and forth between ancient Egypt and Rome”(Lander).

Commentary: The Stage was a lot different than most stages and had little things but they made everything different.

Quote #5: “although the stage lacked scenery, the actors employed various props (objects used on stage), such as thrones, swords, banners, rocks, trees, tables, and beds. Richard III calls for two tents, one at each end of the stage”(Lander).

Commentary: The stage how lots of props and even if they didn't have a lot of stage things they made things for the stage and used those as props.

Quote #6: “Sound effects had an important part in Elizabethan drama. Trumpet blasts and drum rolls were common. Sometimes unusual sounds were created, such as "the noise of a sea-fight" called for in Antony and Cleopatra. Music also played a vital role. Shakespeare filled Twelfth Night with songs. In Antony and Cleopatra, the playwright included mysterious-sounding chords to set the mood before a fatal battle”(Lander).

Commentary: The effects of how the music and arts worked out .

Writings: The acting rolls.

Quote #7: “consisted of only men and boys because women did not perform on the Elizabethan stage. A typical acting company had 8 to 12 sharers, a number of salaried workers, and apprentices. The sharers were the company's leading actors as well as its stockholders. They had charge of the company's business activities. They bought plays and costumes, rented theaters, paid fees, and split the profits. The salaried workers, who were called hirelings, took minor roles in the plays, performed the music, served as prompters, and did various odd jobs. The apprentices were boys who played the roles of women and children”(Lander).

Commentary: back then only men were allowed to be in the drama department, there was only a little of people how could perform.

Quote #8: “The acting companies operated under the sponsorship either of a member of the royal family or of an important noble. Most sponsorships were in name only and did not include financial support. From 1594 to 1603, Shakespeare's company was sponsored, in turn, by the first and second Lord Hunsdon, a father and son. The first Lord Hunsdon held the important court position of lord chamberlain until he died in 1596. In 1597, his son became lord chamberlain. Thus from 1594 to 1603, Shakespeare's company was mostly known as the Lord Chamberlain's Men. After James I became king of England in 1603, he singled out the company for royal favor. It was then known as the King's Men”(Lander).

Commentary: This talks about how the acting companies only had royal families and if you weren't then you could not be in a play.

Quote #9: “Shakespeare was unusual among Elizabethan playwrights. He not only wrote exclusively for his own company but also served as an actor and sharer in it. The close association between Shakespeare, his fellow actors, and the conditions of production had enormous influence on his dramas. Shakespeare wrote most of his plays with a particular theater building in mind and for performers whom he knew well. Each major actor in the company specialized in a certain type of role. For example, one played the leading tragic characters, and another the main comic characters. Still another actor played old men. Shakespeare wrote his plays to suit the talents of specific performers. He knew when he created a Hamlet, Othello, or King Lear that the character would be interpreted by Richard Burbage, the company’s leading tragic actor”(Lander).

Commentary: Shakespeare wrote all the play in the Elizabethan time, he was very famous for all of them and mostly Romeo and Juliet.

Quote #10: :”The absence of scenery did not result in dull or drab productions. Acting companies spent much money on colorful costumes, largely to produce visual splendor. Flashing swords and swirling banners also added color and excitement”(Lander).

Commentary: This talks about the customs and the props they used and wore.

Works Cited

Lander, Jesse M. “Shakespeare, William.” World Book Advanced. World Book, 2016. Web. 30 Nov. 2016.

Works Cited

Lander, Jesse M. “Shakespeare, William.” World Book Advanced. World Book, 2016. Mon. 12 Dec. 2016.


Created with images by City.and.Color - "Shakespeare's Globe Theatre" • Historyworks Photography - "P1130816" • ell brown - "Royal Opera House - Bow Street, London - Elizabethan dress"

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