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About Drama


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  • 1. DramaDrama
  • 2. A drama is a story enacted onstage for a live audience. What Is Drama?What Is Drama?
  • 3. What Is Drama?What Is Drama?  Origins of DramaOrigins of Drama  The wordThe word dramadrama comes from thecomes from the Greek verbGreek verb dran,dran, which meanswhich means “to do.”“to do.”  The earliest known plays . . .The earliest known plays . . .  were written around the fifthwere written around the fifth century B.C.century B.C.  produced for festivals to honorproduced for festivals to honor Dionysus, the god of wine andDionysus, the god of wine and fertilityfertility
  • 4. Like the plot of a story, the plot of a play involves characters who face a problem or conflict. Climax point of highest tension; action determines how the conflict will be resolved Resolution conflict is resolved; play ends Complications tension builds Exposition characters and conflict are introduced Dramatic StructureDramatic Structure
  • 5. Dramatic StructureDramatic Structure ConflictConflict isis a struggle or clasha struggle or clash between opposing charactersbetween opposing characters or forces. A conflict mayor forces. A conflict may develop . . .develop . . .  between characters who wantbetween characters who want different things or the samedifferent things or the same thingthing  between a character and his orbetween a character and his or her circumstancesher circumstances  within a character who is tornwithin a character who is torn by competing desiresby competing desires
  • 6. A tragedy is a play that ends unhappily. • Tragedies pit human limitations against the larger forces of destiny. right and wrong justice and injustice life and death TragedyTragedy • Most classic Greek tragedies deal with serious, universal themes such as
  • 7. The protagonist of most classical tragedies is a tragic hero. This hero • is noble and in many ways admirable • has a tragic flaw, a personal failing that leads to a tragic end rebelliousness jealousy pride TragedyTragedy
  • 8. A comedy is a play that ends happily. The plot usually centers on a romantic conflict. boy meets girl boy loses girl boy wins girl ComedyComedy
  • 9. The main characters in a comedy could be anyone: nobility servantstownspeople ComedyComedy
  • 10. • Comic complications always occur before the conflict is resolved. • In most cases, the play ends with a wedding. ComedyComedy
  • 11. Modern ComedyModern Comedy  Modern ComediesModern Comedies In modern comedies, the genders in this romanticIn modern comedies, the genders in this romantic plot pattern sometimes are reversed.plot pattern sometimes are reversed.
  • 12. A modern play • usually is about ordinary people • may be tragedy, comedy, or a mixture of the two • usually focuses on personal issues Modern DramaModern Drama
  • 13. Modern playwrights often experiment with unconventional plot structures. Modern DramaModern Drama long flashbacks music visual projections of a character’s private thoughts
  • 14. When you read a play, remember that it is meant to be performed for an audience. Stage DirectionsStage Directions Playwright describes settingPlaywright describes setting and characters’ actions andand characters’ actions and manner.manner. [Wyona is sitting on the[Wyona is sitting on the couch. She sees Paul andcouch. She sees Paul and jumps to her feet.]jumps to her feet.] Wyona.Wyona. [Angrily.] What do[Angrily.] What do you want?you want? Performance of a PlayPerformance of a Play PerformancePerformance  Theater artists bring theTheater artists bring the playwright’s vision to lifeplaywright’s vision to life on the stage.on the stage.  The audience responds toThe audience responds to the play and shares thethe play and shares the experience.experience.
  • 15. Performance of a PlayPerformance of a Play  Theater artistsTheater artists includeinclude  ActorsActors  DirectorsDirectors  Lighting techniciansLighting technicians  Stage crewStage crew
  • 16. Stages can have many different sizes and layouts. “Thrust” stage Setting the StageSetting the Stage • The stage extends into the viewing area. • The audience surrounds the stage on three sides.
  • 17. “In the round” stage is surrounded by an audience on all sides. Setting the StageSetting the Stage
  • 18. Proscenium stage Setting the StageSetting the Stage • The playing area extends behind an opening called a “proscenium arch.” • The audience sits on one side looking into the action. upstage downstage stage leftstage right
  • 19. Setting the StageSetting the Stage Stages in Shakespeare’sStages in Shakespeare’s timetime were thrust stages.were thrust stages.
  • 20. Scene design transforms a bare stage into the world of the play. Scene design consists of • props • sets • costumes • lighting Setting the StageSetting the Stage
  • 21. A stage’s set might be realistic and detailed Setting the StageSetting the Stage abstract and minimal
  • 22. A lighting director skillfully uses light to change the mood and appearance of the set. Setting the StageSetting the Stage
  • 23. The costume director works with the director to design the actors’ costumes. • Like sets, costumes can be detailed minimal Setting the StageSetting the Stage
  • 24. Props (short for properties) are items that the characters carry or handle onstage. • The person in charge of props must make sure that the right props are available to the actors at the right moments. Setting the StageSetting the Stage
  • 25. The characters’ speech may take any of the following forms. Dialogue:Dialogue: conversations of characters onstageconversations of characters onstage Monologue:Monologue: long speech given by one character to otherslong speech given by one character to others Soliloquy:Soliloquy: speech by a character alone onstage to himself or herself orspeech by a character alone onstage to himself or herself or to the audienceto the audience Asides:Asides: remarks made to the audience or to one character; the otherremarks made to the audience or to one character; the other characters onstage do not hear an asidecharacters onstage do not hear an aside The CharactersThe Characters
  • 26. Finally, a play needs an audience to experience the performance understand the story respond to the characters The AudienceThe Audience
  • 27. The EndThe End