Women in Theater Essay

Submitted By CorinaRatsavong1
Words: 988
Pages: 4

Theatre Today
Chapter 11: Broadway and Beyond

When you finish Ch 11, you should be able to n Recognize the influences of the post-modern theatre of the 60’s and 70’s n Know what the theatre is a forum for n Define dadaism n Recognize Joseph Charkin’s contributions to theatre n Recognize the changing status of women in the theatre n Name important people and influences in modern theatre n Identify the different types of theatres in existence n Know the top ten cities for theatre in the nation

Why is the lasting value of today’s theatre hard to evaluate? n Constant state of change n Plays and actors famous today not recognized a decade from now

Post-Modern Theatre of the 60’s n Resembled the dithyramb of Dionysus n Three assassinations in the United States n Threat of Nuclear war n Proliferation of drugs n Free love n Vietnam War n Nudity n Profanity n Political corruption n Censorship became unenforceable!

By the late 70’s. . . n Sex and profanity becomes tiresome n AIDS crisis eradicated the “free love” mantra of the 60’s n “Make love, not war” to “Safe sex”

The theatre was and continues to be. . . n A natural forum to rethink and study the major questions of life: n Who am I? n What is my purpose? n What is right? What is wrong? n Am I my brother’s keeper?

Theatre of Revival n Plays of yester year being produced on stage today in new productions n Les Miserables n Phantom of the Opera n Jekyll and Hyde
n Type of postmodern theatre was short-lived after WWI. n Cabaret style theatre with a mixture of dancing, singing, poetry reading, and anti-war protests

Joseph Charkin’s OPEN THEATRE n Theatre should reflect the society around us n Created plays thru improvisation in a workshop atmosphere. n Complained theatre was filled with all white, all males, stereotypical women as brainless playthings, saints, or help mates; African Americans as servants; Asians as exotics

How has women’s role in theatre changed throughout the years? n First appeared on stage in 1660. n Primarily actresses or costumers until the late 50’s and early 60’s n Now have five women who have won Pulitizer Prizes for playwriting n Two women have won Tonys for directing n Over 100 feminist theatre groups doing plays about women’s issues

Important people and terms in modern theatre: n Lorraine Hansberry n Black playwright-A Raisin in the Sun n 70’s saw a lavish era of black muscials: n Dreamgirls n Wiz n Purlie n Bubbling Brown Sugar

First Latino theatre created in Ca in 1965.

East-West theatre: David Henry Hwang (80’s) explored stereotypes of Asian culture

Performance art: Largely improvised works in non-theatrical settings such as art galleries and street corners

Gay and Lesbian influence
· As late as 1958 illegal to openly have a homosexual character in a play
· 60’s saw gays as a serious dramatic issue
· Several plays on the tragic consequences of AIDS;
· The Normal Heart
· As IS

Non traditional casting n Blacks playing roles previously reserved for whites n Women playing men’s roles n To the left: James Earl Jones in Cat on A Hot Tin Roof

Two Widely Read Theatre Journals n The Drama Review n Performing Arts Journal

How has the theatre always been “dangerous”? n Always subject to censorship n Subject matter reflects the tensions of life n Some of that subject matter may be unappealing to some viewers n First amendment and whether government funding should be provided to art projects is always under fire

The most influential director of this century n Peter Brook, author of The Empty Space n Dubbed as the “Aristotle” of the modern theatre

Types of theatres n Broadway: Great White Way; has over 30 theatres in a 12 block area near Times Square n Where potential box office successes go n Off