How Theater Has Changed

Table of contents:

How Theater Has Changed
How Theater Has Changed

World theater, born five hundred years BC, has come a long way from one poet and one reciter, through the cult of the playwright, then the actor, then the director to the modern theater of the document and Rimini protocol. The journey was long, but it is not finished. This is the joy of the real Theater - it develops and changes together with the world around it, often outstripping this world.

Rimini Protokoll Ici c'est Paris
Rimini Protokoll Ici c'est Paris


Step 1

The theater emerged from merrymaking dedicated to the ancient pagan deities, who later acquired human features and names: Demeter, Cora, Dionysus. These gods had many different responsibilities: in particular, to monitor a good harvest of grapes, so that later there would be excellent wine and this event could be celebrated in the Great Dionysias in the way that the ancient Greeks knew how and loved to do it - glorifying the one who is in it. helped. It was on one of these festivities in 534 BC. and the Theater was born, which has been transformed over many millennia, having gone a long way from huge masks, koturnas, stageless stage to the art of theatrical machinery and an artist-personality. But the essence of the theater remains almost unchanged.

Step 2

Later, the art of performance sucked the Greeks into their nets so much that they no longer needed the mood-warming, amusing drinks. In order to enjoy the stories and empathize with the heroes during the performances organized by the first playwrights - some of the most respected people in the democratic polis - they only had a small supply of food, which they consumed during the breaks of the performances. Moreover, since comedies were not honored by the ancient Greeks for several centuries and were not considered high art, it would be simply impossible to come after libations and watch a tragedy lasting for ten to twelve hours or more. And the comedies of the only comedian of the Greek civilization, Aristophanes, demanded constant attention - after all, no one wanted to miss the caustic epithets about all well-known contemporaries, which could then be retell to his wife and neighbor.

Step 3

The Romans, as a later civilization that did not create anything really original in the field of art, and were content only with a simplified processing of what was created long before them by the Greeks, very quickly turned the great originals into their low-quality copies. And, in this regard, they declared theater to be an art insignificant and low. The only theatrical direction that improved during the Roman Empire was the art of mimes and pantomime performances.

Step 4

The epoch of the Middle Ages, stretching over six centuries, almost completely buried the theatrical art. Many of its best representatives - since the art of reincarnation was impossible to comprehend by the scholastics from the Inquisition - ended their lives on hind legs and bonfires. But the theater survived thanks to the restless and indefatigable "fools" who were born from generation to generation on European soil. It was they who preserved in their memory and lists many plots and stories that later became the basis of classical drama: Shakespeare's, Moliere's, Kornel's, etc.

Step 5

For several centuries the theater seemed to be frozen in its development. Yes, great playwrights were born who left their work for centuries. Legends have preserved the names of talented artists in memory: most of them are men, since the theater for two millennia, since ancient Greek times, did not allow women to enter its stage. But apart from new stories, and numerous interpretations of old ones, he could not offer the world anything else. The art of ballet and opera, which existed at some distance from the dramatic, was even more conservative in form.

Step 6

A breakthrough in new theatrical forms happened in the late 19th - early 20th centuries. The theater could not fail to respond to the general intellectual development and new forms in other forms of art: artists came to it - from the impressionists to the cubists; poets came - from Symbolists and Imagists to Cubo-Futurists; but most importantly, a new profession was born in the theater - director. It was the great directors who created their schools that gave impetus to the theater that still exists today: Gordon Craig, Konstantin Stanislavsky, Vsevolod Meyerhold, Alexander Tairov, Evgeny Vakhtangov, Berthord Brecht, Charles Dyullen, Jacques Lecoq.

Step 7

The modern theater of the XXI century does not abandon anything that was created by its predecessors, and continues to give birth to new forms and meanings. In the last decade, it has been dominated - with some reservations, of course - not a playwright, not a director, or even an actor. It is dominated by a document (in the processing of all of the above). This can be seen especially clearly in the theatrical direction of the Dock Theater (documentary), in its modern form, born in Great Britain at the Royal Court Theater, and in the direction born in Germany - in the theater company Rimini Protokoll, where often non-professional artists play on the stage.

Step 8

Modern theater allows itself everything that, from the point of view of its creators, can best express their idea: it mixes forms, genres, types of art, interpreting and transforming old into new ones, attracts the latest technologies, but, most importantly, it is in constant search, not allowing yourself and your viewer to freeze, fall into another centuries-old stagnation. Unless, of course, this is the Theater of Creators, not commercial figures exploiting the "chewing gum" from the "works" created for the needs of an uncomplicated public. Although, on the modern theatrical field, both directions - both commercial and creative - coexist, albeit separately, but quite peacefully.