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Chapter 1: Theatre, Art, and Entertainment
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Chapter 1: Theatre, Art, and Entertainment

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  • 1. Chapter 1Chapter 1 Theatre, Art, andTheatre, Art, and EntertainmentEntertainment
  • 2. What is Art?What is Art? A skillA skill From the Greek word - technē An act of beautyAn act of beauty From a branch of philosophy known as aesthetics A specific meaningA specific meaning From an attempt to understand ourselves and the world around us
  • 3. What is Art?What is Art? ““Art is a selective re-creation of reality according to anArt is a selective re-creation of reality according to an artist’s metaphysical value judgments. Man’s profoundartist’s metaphysical value judgments. Man’s profound need for art lies in the fact that his cognitive faculty isneed for art lies in the fact that his cognitive faculty is conceptual, i.e., that he acquires knowledge by means ofconceptual, i.e., that he acquires knowledge by means of abstractions, and needs the power to bring his widestabstractions, and needs the power to bring his widest meta-physical abstractions into his immediate perceptualmeta-physical abstractions into his immediate perceptual awareness.”awareness.” Ayn Rand, aAyn Rand, author and philosopheruthor and philosopher
  • 4. What are the basic qualities of artWhat are the basic qualities of art that all works of art share?that all works of art share? WilliamMissouriDowns
  • 5. Art is a Form of Human ExpressionArt is a Form of Human Expression The wordThe word artart springs from the same root assprings from the same root as the wordthe word artificialartificial.. Art is not the real thing but rather a humanArt is not the real thing but rather a human creative endeavor that involves thecreative endeavor that involves the perceptions and imagination of an artist who isperceptions and imagination of an artist who is trying to say something in his or her owntrying to say something in his or her own particular way.particular way.
  • 6. ““In one sense the aim ofIn one sense the aim of the scientist and the aimthe scientist and the aim of the artist are the sameof the artist are the same since both are in pursuitsince both are in pursuit of what they call truth; butof what they call truth; but the difference betweenthe difference between them may be said tothem may be said to consist in this, that whileconsist in this, that while for science there is onlyfor science there is only one truth, for the artistone truth, for the artist there are many.”there are many.” Joseph Wood Krutch,Joseph Wood Krutch, author and philosopherauthor and philosopher WilliamMissouriDowns
  • 7. Art Involves Subject and MediumArt Involves Subject and Medium  Spatial ArtsSpatial Arts  ArchitectureArchitecture  SculptureSculpture  Pictorial ArtsPictorial Arts  PaintingPainting  Line and color in two dimensionsLine and color in two dimensions  Literary ArtsLiterary Arts  PoetryPoetry  Novels and short storiesNovels and short stories  Performing ArtsPerforming Arts  Performed by a personPerformed by a person
  • 8. Art Makes You Feel SomethingArt Makes You Feel Something Paul Drinkwater/NBCU Photo Bank via AP Images Michael Falco/The New York Times/Redux
  • 9. Art Provides a Perception of OrderArt Provides a Perception of Order ““It is the function of all art to give us someIt is the function of all art to give us some perception of an order in life, by imposing orderperception of an order in life, by imposing order upon it.”upon it.” T. S. Eliot, poetT. S. Eliot, poet ““Life is very nice, but it lacks form. It’s the aim ofLife is very nice, but it lacks form. It’s the aim of art to give it some.”art to give it some.” Jean Anouilh, playwrightJean Anouilh, playwright
  • 10. What is the Purpose of Art?What is the Purpose of Art? ““I am suspicious ofI am suspicious of any theory of artany theory of art which says that art iswhich says that art is just one thing and thatjust one thing and that it can be defined in ait can be defined in a single aim, function,single aim, function, or purpose.”or purpose.” Harold Taylor,Harold Taylor, art philosopherart philosopher MichalDaniel/Proofsheet
  • 11. What is Theatre?What is Theatre?  The word theatre comes from the Greek word theatron meaning “seeing place.”  “A man walks across this empty space whilst someone else is watching him, and this is all that is needed for act of theatre to be engaged.” Peter Brook, The Empty Space
  • 12. What is Drama?What is Drama?  The word drama comes from the Greek wordThe word drama comes from the Greek word drandran meaning “to take action, to do, or to make”meaning “to take action, to do, or to make”  Drama tells a story about people in conflictDrama tells a story about people in conflict
  • 13. Both Theatre and DramaBoth Theatre and Drama Share Three QualitiesShare Three Qualities  They are live – no two performances are theThey are live – no two performances are the samesame  They are about human beingsThey are about human beings  They are collaborative art formsThey are collaborative art forms
  • 14. CommonCommon CategoriesCategories ofof TheatreTheatre
  • 15. 1. Commercial Theatre1. Commercial Theatre Commercial playsCommercial plays offer safe themes,offer safe themes, plenty of laughs, andplenty of laughs, and spectacle designed tospectacle designed to appeal to a majority ofappeal to a majority of people, thereby fillingpeople, thereby filling lots of seats andlots of seats and ideally making lots ofideally making lots of money.money. WilliamMissouriDowns
  • 16. 2. Historical Theatre2. Historical Theatre Presents dramas that uses styles, themes, and staging of plays from a particular historical period. ©2000DonTurner
  • 17. 3. Political Theatre3. Political Theatre Allows playwrights,Allows playwrights, directors, anddirectors, and actors to expressactors to express their personaltheir personal opinions aboutopinions about current issues,current issues, trends, and politicstrends, and politics ©P.Switzer
  • 18. 4. Experimental Theatre4. Experimental Theatre It might break downIt might break down barriers by eliminatingbarriers by eliminating the distance betweenthe distance between actor and audience,actor and audience, trying out new stagingtrying out new staging techniques, or eventechniques, or even questioning thequestioning the nature of theatre itselfnature of theatre itself Courtesy,Living Theatre
  • 19. 5. Cultural Theatre5. Cultural Theatre Is designed to support the heritage,Is designed to support the heritage, customs, and POV of a particular people,customs, and POV of a particular people, religion, class, country, or community.religion, class, country, or community. This theatre provides a window into aThis theatre provides a window into a world that is different from their own or byworld that is different from their own or by preserving the unique traditions of apreserving the unique traditions of a particular society.particular society.
  • 20. ““When you come into theWhen you come into the theater, you have to be willing totheater, you have to be willing to say, ‘We're all here to undergo asay, ‘We're all here to undergo a communion, to find out what thecommunion, to find out what the hell is going on in this world.’ Ifhell is going on in this world.’ If you're not willing to say that,you're not willing to say that, what you get is entertainmentwhat you get is entertainment instead of art, and poorinstead of art, and poor entertainment at that.entertainment at that. David Mamet,David Mamet, Three UsesThree Uses of the Knifeof the Knife Art and EntertainmentArt and EntertainmentPhotocourtesyofKarenBerman
  • 21. Art and EntertainmentArt and Entertainment  Lets us see another’sLets us see another’s POVPOV  Requires active viewingRequires active viewing  Is about self-examinationIs about self-examination  Has great potential as anHas great potential as an agent of social changeagent of social change  Challenges the audienceChallenges the audience  Is about edification,Is about edification, transcendence,transcendence, contemplationcontemplation  Does not compromise forDoes not compromise for public tastepublic taste  Reaffirms our own POVReaffirms our own POV  Is directed toward theIs directed toward the largest possible numberlargest possible number  Makes no intellectualMakes no intellectual demands on the viewerdemands on the viewer  May examine life butMay examine life but does not lead to criticismdoes not lead to criticism  Has little potential as anHas little potential as an agent of social changeagent of social change  Is about gratification,Is about gratification, indulgence, escapeindulgence, escape
  • 22. Curtain CallCurtain Call We need art and theatre because they help usWe need art and theatre because they help us see lifesee life differently.differently. Entertainment allows us to see life asEntertainment allows us to see life as we seewe see it, with our values and perceptionsit, with our values and perceptions intact.intact. Art, on the other hand, allows us to expand ourArt, on the other hand, allows us to expand our experience, intensify our perceptions, challengeexperience, intensify our perceptions, challenge conventional wisdom, and introduce another frame ofconventional wisdom, and introduce another frame of reference—that of the artist.reference—that of the artist.