Tuesday, July 24, 2007
NEW OLD THEATER
This is a blog about 19th-century theater, primarily meant for members of New Old Theater (http://www.newoldtheater.org/), an acting company dedicated to the revival of popular 19th-century drama and its conventions.
Above is a picture of Covent Garden circa 1815 -- I believe the play is Shakespeare's Henry V. Notice the positioning of actors downstage near the footlights, the extended postures of actors -- you can even tell which one is speaking at the moment -- the division of audience into pit, boxes and gallery, and the manner in which the audience is as much a matter for viewing as is the play. In our next production, featuring The Stage-Struck Yankee (1849) and Nahum Tate's The History of King Lear (1681), we will be working towards creating the feel, if not the plush surroundings, of this type of theatrical experience.
Please check my blog regularly for text of handouts, photos and drawings of 19th-century actors, material on stage conventions and announcements about our group.