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The Theater

During Shakespeares Time


Elizabethan Theater
Called this to honor the
queen, Queen Elizabeth I
She loved art, music,
drama, and poetry
She was a patron of the
arts
A patron is a rich citizen of
high rank who backed an
acting company
She liked Shakespeares
plays and protected him
Important People to the
Theater
The Master of
Revels was the
official censor of plays
He approved or
censored content
A patron sponsored
an acting company
Acting companies had
to be sponsored by a
patron
The Theater
Londons first
theater
Built in 1576
Owned by James
Burbage
James I
Became king in 1603
Was a supporter of
drama
James became the patron
of Shakespeares acting
company
They changed their
company name from Lord
Chamberlains Men to
the Kings Men
The Globe Theater
Built in 1599
In Southwark (near
London)
Shakespeare was a
part owner
Burned down in 1613
Rebuilt in 1614
Torn down in 1644 by
the Puritans
The Globe
Octagonal shape
Unroofed yard in the
center
Audience members who
paid a penny and stood in
the yard to watch a
performance were called
groundlings
Seating capacity of 3000
Parts of the Globe

Yard (where
groundlings stood)
Permanent Door
(stage entrance and exit) Platform (main acting area)
Parts of the Globe
Chamber
(upper stage)

Galleries
Terras (3 tiers of seats for
(balcony) audience members)

Study Trap Door


(lead to an area beneath the stage known
(inner stage)
as Hell)
Parts of the Globe
Fla
Canopy g
(represented the sky)
Huts
(represented the Heavens)

Musicians
Gallery
Performances
Held in the afternoon
(2:00)
A flag would be
hoisted on the day of
a performance
The start was
signaled by a trumpet
sounding 3 times
Acting Companies
Consisted of 25-30
actors
Female roles played
by boys
Each company had a
clown for comic relief
Plays were written
with actors and their
abilities in mind
Shakespeares Acting
Company
Originally Lord
Chamberlains Men Richard
(later became The Burbage
Kings Men)
Richard Burbage (a great
tragic actor in
Shakespeares company)
Will Kempe (a famous
comedian in Shakepeares Shakespeare
company)
Staging and Scenery
Most plays lasted
two hours
There was little
interruption because
scenery wasnt used
Did use some props
(lanterns)
Setting was
established with
words
Costumes
Were colorful and
expensive
Usually donated by
rich patrons
Costumes
Would establish a
characters status
(wealthy, poor, soldier,
king, etc.)
Was symbolic of a
characters morality
White = purity
Black = evil
Red = violence, blood
The Closing of the Theaters
Puritans closed down
the playhouses in
1644
They believed actors
were evil and immoral
The New Globe Theater
45 million dollar
reconstruction
Opened in 1997