Greek Theatre essay

Topics: Tragedy, Actor, Aeschylus, Character, Drama, Protagonist / Pages: 3 (1099 words) / Published: May 12th, 2014
Greek theatre essay – Hugo Fuller

"The chorus was a crucial part of Greek theatre and was used to narrate the story, give their opinion of the plot, and keep a rhythm for the play. The chorus did this in various ways, such as through costumes, stage presence, music and singing. What did the chorus bring to Greek theatre and how was it shaped because of it?"

The chorus played an important role in Greek theatre. Sometimes the chorus would help the audience to follow the story - it had an informative role. At other times it exposed what the main character might be thinking or feeling, it brought to theatre this very deep and meaningful side to it. And the chorus also played a part in the musical side of it. It also went through many changes, “The chorus originally consisted of fifty members, but some later playwrights changed the size. Aeschylus likely lowered the number to twelve, and Sophocles raised it again to fifteen”1, so it was also to do with a personal view of how the classic chorus should be used.The chorus was able to do these things through staging, costumes, music and singing. The chorus shaped Greek theatre in a positive manner. One of the chorus’s primary functions was to help the audience follow the story. They would observe and comment on the actions of the actors. It also provided an interlude from the action - almost like a little break. So whilst the main action might have been really tense and dramatic then the chorus would come on and provide a soothing song or piece of music. But first of all they were there for the purpose of informing the audience of what was going on. They were there to bridge the gap between the actors and the audience, by making responses and asking questions. The chorus would change from character to character in front of the audience as well, by literally changing masks in front of them. So if the main actor changed into a god then the chorus would all become worshippers. “Aeschylus emphasised the chorus in

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