History of Theatre
Early in the 1700's British people that were involved with theatre were mostly middle class. There were 2 kinds of new dramatic theatre: sentimental comedy and domestic tragedy. The fist playhouse was in the American colonies was built in Williamsburg, Virginia. In 1741 the greatest British actor was born and his name was David Garrick. Aeschylus wrote the first major playwright and multiple contests. "The Orestria" was the last remaining tragic trilogy. Sophocles pioneered painted scenery and added the third choral leader, wrote "Antigone." Euripides went against popular belief and pioneered female protagonist. Aristophanes was the first comedian and made fun of current leaders, rated "M" for mature. Gotthold Ephraim Lessing was the head German dramatist during the Enlightenment, as well as a critic, a philosopher, and an aesthetician. His works advocated liberal thinking and religious tolerance. He wrote the first German plays of "Note and Sought" to make German drama as an entity seperate from French and classical influences. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe is permanently associated with the German romantic movement and is the major literary figure in German history. A true Renaissance man, he was a novelist, playwright, translator, natural philosopher, poet, musician, composer, scientist, and finally a historian. His Faust is a "closet drama", a work in dramatic form to be read not performed. In the late 1700's, German theatre changed dramatically by the
Romantic movement known as "Sturm und Drang" (storm and stress). In 1773, British playwright Oliver Goldsmith attacked the popular sentimental comedy and proposed a more humorous and realistic "laughing comedy." In his fast paced comedy She Stoops to Conquer, Goldsmith had achieved his goal. Rich Brinsley Sheridan got into sentimental comedy in the 1770's with his plays The Rivals and The School for Scandal. The American Revolution had a crippling...
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