Absurd Theatre

  • Theatre of Absurd is a term used to characterized the work of a number of European and American dramatists of the 1950s and early 1960s.
  • Function of such theatre is to give dramatic expression to the notion of the ‘absurd’.
  • ‘The Theatre of the Absurd’ is a term coined by the critic Martin Esslin.
  • The term is derived from an essay by the French philosopher Albert Camus from his ‘Myth of Sisyphus’. It was written in 1942, he first defined the human situation as basically meaningless and absurd.
  • The origin of the Theatre of the Absurd are rooted in the avant-garde experiments in art of the 1920s and 1930s. 
  • Most importantly it was influenced by the traumatic experience of the horrors of the Second World War.
  • The Theatre of the Absurd openly rebelled against conventional theatre.
  • The Theatre of the Absurd first met with incomprehension and rejection.
  • Theatre of Absurd showing language as an insufficient tool of communication.
  • It emphasizes the importance of objects and visual experience.
  • Their work focused largely on the idea of existentialism.
  • Playwrights commonly associated with the Theatre of the Absurd include Samuel Beckett, Eugène Ionesco, Jean Genet, Arthur Adamov, Harold Pinter, Luigi Pirandello, Tom Stoppard, Friedrich Dürrenmatt, Miguel Mihura, Alejandro Jodorowsky, Fernando Arrabal, Václav Havel, Edward Albee, Malay Roy Choudhury, Tadeusz Różewicz, Sławomir Mrożek, N.F. Simpson and Badal Sarkar.
  • Language in an Absurdist play is often dislocated, full of cliches, puns, repetitions. 
  • It leaves the audience buffled.
  • Samuel Beckett’s masterpiece Waiting for Godot, one of the great plays included in this.
  • ‘Absurd’ originally means “out of harmony” (in a musical context) – its meaning in the theatre of the absurd is different to the everyday meaning of the word as “ridiculous”.
  • Sartre denied the existence of a God, seeing humans with no choice but to create their own standard.
  • It was labeled by some critics as ‘anti-theatre’.
  • Important Plays:
    1. Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett
    2. Endgame by Samuel Beckett
    3. Rhinoceros by Eugene Ionesco
    4. The Chairs by Eugene Ionesco
    5. The Lesson by Eugene Ionesco
    6. The Bald Prima Donna / The Bald Soprano by Eugene Ionesco
    7. Exit The King by Eugene Ionesco
    8. The Balcony by Jean Genet.

Abbey Theatre

  • Abbey Theatre is also known as the National Theatre of Ireland.
  •  It Opened in Dublin in 1904.
  •  First opened on 27 Dec 1904.
  • It lost its building in 1951.
  •  Abbey theatre is also known as the first state subsidized theatre in the English speaking world.
  • It served as a nursery for many writers like Lady Gregory, Edward Martin, W. B Yeats, Sean O Casey, J. M Synge.
  •  Yeats was the director in 1939.
  •  In 1925 the Abbey theatre received grant from the new government of Eire, thus becoming the first state subsidized theatre in the English speaking world.

Globe Theatre

  • Globe theatre was the most magnificent theatre that London had ever seen and built in 1597-1598.
  • The Globe Theatrewas associated with William Shakespeare.
  • Situated in London on the south bank of the Thames.
  • It was built by Shakespeare’s playing company, the Lord Chamberlain’s Men in 1559.
  • The globe theatre was built on land owned by Thomas Brendand inherited by his son, Nicholas Brend and grandson Sir Matthew Brend.
  • It was destroyed by fire on 29 June 1613.
  • Theatre went up in flames during a performance of Henry VIII.
  • A second Globe Theatre was built on the same site by June 1614.
  • The second globe theatre was closed by an Ordinance issued on 6 September 1642.
  • The modern reconstruction of the Globe, named “Shakespeare’s Globe”.
  • The “Shakespeare’s Globe”, opened in 1997 with a production of Henry V.
  • It was a three-story, open-air amphitheatre between 97 and 102 feet. 
  • The plays were staged in the afternoons, using the light of day, and the audience surrounded the stage on all sides.
  • At the base of the stage, there was an area called the pit, where the groundlings would stand to watch the performance.
  • Around the yard were three levels of stadium-style seats, which were more expensive than standing room.
  • The ceiling under this roof was called the “heavens,” and may have been painted with clouds and the sky.
  • Most of Shakespeare’s post-1599 plays were staged at the Globe, including great tragedies.
  • The Globe theatre was built according to an Elizabethan plan. The theatre is open to the sky.
Social media & sharing icons powered by UltimatelySocial
error: Content is protected !!