History of Elizabethan Theatre in London 

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  • Topic: English Renaissance theatre, Theatre, James Burbage
  • Pages : 4 (1060 words )
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  • Published : April 25, 2012
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History of Elizabethan Theatre in London 

During Shakespeare´s time London had a great political and economic importance with a large population. Up to this moment the royal Court was seated at Westminster, with its diplomatic life and administrative decision-making. But London was also one of the main centres of English intellectual life. London was a major centre for inland and overseas trade. Both of them expanded during the Elizabethan time. It became the Establishment of the Stock Exchange. The rich merchants supported the expeditions of the pioneers and adventurers. They sailed unknown seas and explored distant countries to open up new markets for England. Many other kinds of workers also worked in the inner city. Every social class created a colourful picture. 

The Londoner spent most of their spare time visiting animals fights and taverns. But the most preferred pastime was theatre-going. It was the favourite of any social group. 

Different kinds of Elizabethan theatres 

There were two kinds of Elizabethan theatres, „public" and „private" theatres. Both were not too away from each other.  On the one hand the „public" theatres were visited by various audiences. They performed plays suitable for everyone, mainly for the crowd around the stage except for the wealthier patrons who sat in a seclusion of the surrounding galleries or Lords´ rooms. 

On the other hand the „private" theatres which were located in halls of already existing buildings. There were benches next to the stage for the wealthy audience, but also galleries. The audience capacity was smaller and there were much higher admission prices. According to Alfred Harbage three different Elizabethan audiences had to be distinguished. Firstly, the genteel audience which visited the private theatres. Secondly, the plebian audience which was part of the Red Bull and the Fortune consisting of plebian people apart from the expelled gentry. 

The Globe audience in the nineties consisted of...
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