Page 1 of 7

Commedia Del'Arte. Character Analysis and Traits of Columbina, Is...

Continues for 6 more pages »
Read full document

Commedia Del'Arte. Character Analysis and Traits of Columbina, Isabella, Arlecchino and Lelio.

Page 1 of 7
COLUMBINA

Columbina is the perky maid of the 'Old Man', Pantalone. She is better dressed than the male servants as she is also a lady's maid. She usually wears a knee length dress and an apron. The colouring of her clothes can be different in different acts, depending on her relationships with the characters and the scenario. She can be in a similar scheme to Arlecchino (where she is sometimes known as Arlecchina with similar diamonds and triangles), or if she is assigned to a rival family of Arlecchino's, she can be in that scheme. In cases where she is an independent character, she can be in blacks and whites in the spirit of a French Maid.

Columbina does not usually wear a mask but sometimes wears one covering only her eyes. Her signature props are a tambourine and a basket. Her physical appearance is attractive, perky and petite with a tiny waist, wide hips and lots of cleavage.

She walks as if she is skipping on air with a little flick of the foot at the end of each step. All her posses are usually seductive and accentuate her cleavage. Her movement continues during speaking, shifting balance from one foot to the other and moving her head sharply as if searching for someone other than the person being addressed. She's fast and nimble in order to escape unwanted attentions or to butt in, and can escape from a situation. She is happy and carefree, yet when assigned a task moves with speed and efficiency. This is one of her strongest traits in being a good servant. Her speech is sharp and gossipy with frequent variations of pitch.

She Loves Arlecchino, but sees through him. She therefore scolds him, punishes him, deserts him, takes him back, but in the end he does not change and she has to accept him for what he is, which is still more lovable than Il Dottore, Pantalone and Il Capitano. She can be very affectionate to other characters as well, and her affections seem to flow through her physically, but she always holds something back. As a result...