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Shakespeare's Globe Theater - Essay Example

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The world, Shakespeare famously said in the merchant of Venice, is a stage and all have a part to play in it (Benston 370); while this alluded to Antonio’s acceptance of his melancholic nature the line also underscores a major aspect of Shakespearean drama. The actual stage…
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Download file to see previous pages It was located in the outskirts of London (Notini 1001); made from oak was one of England’s most magnificent structures with a sitting capacity of around 3000 and designed as an open air three story amphitheater. Despite the glaring class divisions in the Elizabethan times, which were evident even in most of the plays, the theatre provided a forum in which both the rich and poor could enjoy entertainment together. The upper classes occupied the upper levels which were relatively comfortable while the poor also known in the theater context as ‘groundling’ occupied an area called the pit for the price of a penny although they had to stand.
The theatre’s dramatic symbolism was enhanced by the fact that signs and flags were normally used when advertising performances that the audience expected to see (Weimann 402). A tragedy like Othello would be symbolized by a black flag, comedies like taming of the shrew a white one and historical plays such as Julius Ceaser would be advertised with a red flag. Embossed on the entrance were the Latin inscriptions “Totus mundus agit histrionem”, meaning the whole world is a playhouse. The theater’s historical significance is underpinned by its close resemblance to the Greco roman structures where citizens met to enjoy games and plays. It acts as a bridge to the classical and renaissance periods where theater was finally given the recognition it deserved and to a significant extent, the globe theatre is the reason for success and relevance of broadways and even Hollywood albeit indirectly. Here, famous plays were tried and tested and different staging techniques experimented with, the individuality of actors was also approached with exceptional ones being recognized and this gradually led up to the concept of stardom where actors are highly revered although in those days they were often considered immoral. During ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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