Essay questions italian renaissance

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Essay questions italian renaissance

The performers were not professional actors, but ordinary citizens who acted only in their spare time. With the centralization of the population in the cities during the later part of the Middle Ages, the interest in secular drama began to increase. At the end of the medieval period, when there were still some guild productions, a rivalry developed between the amateur actor and the new professional actor which stimulated interest in the art of acting.

In the sixteenth century, the Elizabethan stage became almost Essay questions italian renaissance professional and public. Professional groups were formed which charged admission fees to allow audiences to witness their performances.

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The new theater groups devoted their entire time to the art and craft of play producing. The art of acting be-came a profession during the Elizabethan period which would furnish a good livelihood for the actor.

Likewise, the production of plays at this time was a good financial venture. Because of the Act ofwhich classed any person not a member of a guild as a vagabond and subject to arrest, the groups of actors were exposed to a new danger since many of them were no longer members of a guild and were devoting themselves to traveling about the country and acting.

In order to Essay questions italian renaissance themselves from being arrested, many of the actors put themselves under the patronage of an important person. Then they could be called a servant of this person and would be free of the charge of being a vagabond.

The Renaissance Theater

Although many times the relationship between actors and patrons was only nominal, there were a few of these patrons who did give some financial assistance to the actors. Late in the century, Queen Elizabeth gave permission for a group of actors to perform in London in spite of local rules against actors.

Elizabeth stipulated that they could act in London as long as their performances met the approval of the Master of the Revels. By the end of the century, there were always a number of groups of companies playing in London and also others touring the outlying districts. The actors, usually young males, organized themselves into companies in which each of them would own a certain number of shares.

These companies were cooperative and self-governing and divided the profit from the performances. The company would either lease or build its own theater in which to perform, hire men to play the minor parts, and get young apprentice boys to play the female parts in the plays.

The important members of the company usually played definite types of characters. For example, Richard Burbage would always play the leading tragic roles, whereas such actors as William Kempe and Robert Armin would play the comic roles.

Plays were often written for a particular troupe or company, and often at their direction. For example, a playwright might read the first act to the members of the company and then accept their criticism and suggestions for changes. Consequently, many plays might be considered as the combined effort of dramatists and actors.

The method of acting was peculiar to the Elizabethan period. The actors expressed themselves in a highly operatic manner with flamboyant expressions.

The gestures were stylized according to certain rhetorical traditions. Rhetoric books of the time told exactly how to use one's hands to express fear or anger or other emotional states. The Elizabethan stage was a "presentational theater" in that there was no attempt to persuade the audience that they were not in a theater and no attempt was made to create any dramatic illusions because there was very little scenery.

Also, the actors could speak directly to the audience; the soliloquy, a speech spoken directly to the audience, was a typical characteristic of Elizabethan drama. Since the stage was relatively unadorned, the actors depended upon the visual color and pageantry of their elaborate costumes to give color to the play.

Sometimes there was an attempt to wear historical costumes, but most often the actors wore decorative and elaborate Elizabethan dress.

The Elizabethan stage also was a repertory stage; that is, an actor would have memorized certain roles for a limited number of plays. Therefore, each company would present only a given number of plays at prescribed intervals.

An incomparable record of the repertory system is Henslowe's diaries. Henslowe kept valuable records of the plays which were performed by the Admiral's company, with which he was associated from to May 11,  · Words: Length: 2 Pages Document Type: Essay Paper #: Italian Renaissance brought humanity into a golden age of artistic expression and the rejuvenation of humanism as a philosophy and a way of looking at the world.

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Essay questions italian renaissance

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