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How was medieval English theatre performed? Many of the modern theatrical concepts and terms used today to discuss the nature of medieval English theatre were never used in medieval times. Concepts and terms such as character, characterisation, truth and belief, costume, acting style, amateur, professional, stage directions, effects and special effects are all examples of post-medieval terms that have been applied to the English theatre. Little has been written about staging conventions in the performance of medieval English theatre and the identity and value of these conventions has often been overlooked. In this book, Philip Butterworth analyses dormant evidence of theatrical processes such as casting, doubling of parts, rehearsing, memorising, cueing, entering, exiting, playing, expounding, prompting, delivering effects, timing, hearing, seeing and responding. All these concerns point to a very different kind of theatre to the naturalistic theatre produced today.Read more
- Examines dormant and newly recovered evidence of staging conventions in medieval theatre production
- Provides a critically reconsidered understanding of medieval English theatre practice
- Analyses how medieval English staging conventions conditioned the reactions between cast and audience
Reviews & endorsements
‘Butterworth’s book will be of use to those seeking a scholarly discussion of problems and strategies in the performance of medieval drama, both as it was once written and played, and for contemporary revivals. His knowledge is extensive and his practical experience of the staging of many of these works clearly and helpfully informs his comments on their characteristic ways of working in space, time, and action.’ Tom Bishop, Speculum
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- Date Published: July 2018
- format: Paperback
- isbn: 9781108464758
- length: 284 pages
- dimensions: 230 x 153 x 15 mm
- weight: 0.44kg
- contains: 10 b/w illus.
- availability: Available
Table of Contents
1. Outdoors and indoors
2. Casting and doubling
3. Rehearsing, memorising and cueing
4. Coming and going
5. Playing, feigning and counterfeiting
6. Dressing and disguising
7. Expounding and monitoring
8. Effecting effects
9. Timing and waiting
10. Hearing, seeing and responding.
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