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MODERNISM:

ANTI-REALISM

BACKGROUND:
A TIME OF UNREST
THE WORLD WARS

A TIME OF UNREST

REACTION & REJECTION TO


THE REALISM MOVEMENT

LATE 19TH CENTURY

AFTER WWII

POST WORLD WAR


RECOVERY & BOOM

RISE OF THE LOWER


CLASSES

EFFECT OF
WAR

BURST OF CREATIVE
ACTIVITY IN BOTH ART AND
LANGUAGE

PEOPLE EXERCISING
THEIR RIGHTS

VALIDITY OF ANALYTICAL
& CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGY

VALIDITY OF ANALYTICAL
& CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGY

ARTISTS WERE MYSTIFIED


BY THE INSENSITIVE &
INDISCRIMINATE
DESTRUCTION OF
MODERN WARFARE

THE

MOVEMENT

EXPLOSION OF A
MULTITUDE OF THEATRE
APPROACHES & IDEAS IN
THE CULTURAL SCENE

PROLIFERATION
OF ART STYLES &
PHILOSOPHICAL
VIEWPOINTS

THEATRICALISM

STYLE:
A) CHOSEN BY THE DIRECTOR
B) DICTATES AESTHETIC RULES
& HOW THE PRODUCTION
TEAM WORKS

SYMBOLISM

FRENCH

1880 and 1910

FOCUS
1) INNER REALITIES
2) INFINITE HUMAN QUALITIES
3) SYMBOLIC IMAGERY

PLAYWRIGHTS

- Born Feb. 1, 1872, Reims, France


- Died April 20, 1960, Argenlieu
- Theatre Dart (1890)
- Founded & edited the review
Verset Prose (190514)
- "La Ronde
- Retired In 1892

Paul Fort
(1872-1960)

Villiers de
LIsle-Adam
(France)

Axl(firstperformed
1884;publishedon1890)

Maurice
Maeterlinck
(Belgium)

Pellaset
Mlisande (1892)

Aurlien
Lugn-Po
Thtre de
lOeuvre

DESIGNERS

Maurice
Maeterlinck
(Belgium)

Pellaset
Mlisande (1892)

Adolph Appia
(1 September 1862
29 February 1928)

- Son of Louis Appia


- considered light as the primary
element
- mise en scene and the totality or
unity of the performance experience
was primary

Gordon Craig
(1872-1966)
son of actress Dame Ellen Terry
-an actor, director and scenic
designer
- stage lighting
footlights lights in the ceiling
-Mise-en-scne (set design, lighting,
space, composition, costume and
makeup, acting)
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (Germany, 1920)
features stark lighting and jagged
architecture

a leading Russian antirealist


Actor, director
believed movement to be the most
powerful form of theatrical expression.
Created a style of acting called
biomechanics (machine like in motion
and emotions could be represented
externally)
arrested and executed by firing squad
in February 1940

Vsevolod
Meyerhold
(1874-1940)

Vsevolod
Meyerhold
(1874-1940)
Meyerholds non-realistic, avantgarde, experimental
theatre productions came under
close scrutiny from government
censors, as much of his work was
risky and opposed to Stalins
official policy for the arts, that of
socialist realism.

PLAY
STRUCTURE:
Plot, Character, Language

actions are used more;


very short sentences

deeper meaning behind

the sets were meant not to echo


the visible shapes or forms of the
characters, but, in a
kind of synesthesia, to analogize
the essence of the play itself.
bizarre shapes and sensational colors
vividly dreamlike and nightmarish

THEATRICAL
ELEMENTS:
Sets, Lights, Sound,
Costumes, Masks

Lugn-Poe's staging of Rosmersholm

JOB
DESCRIPTION
ACTOR, DIRECTOR

Actor
- lost their individuality
- identified by nameless
designations, like 'The Man',
'The Father', 'The Son', 'The
Workman

AUDIENCE

Jean Moreas published the


Symbolist Manifesto in 1886 that
greatly influenced the entire
movement in the visual and
performing arts.
The symbolists aimed to
eliminate all traces of naturalistic
or imitative acting,
and all romance and
melodrama.

PRINCIPLES

EXPRESSIONISM

AUDIENCE

The Cabinet
of Dr Caligari,
Germany, 1919.
Film directed by
Robert Wiene.

Flourished in Germany during WWI


drama of protest, reacting against the prewar authority of the family and community,
the rigid lines of the social order and
eventually the industrialization of society
and the mechanization of life; it was a
violent drama of youth against age, freedom
and authority
the advent of Freudian and Jungian
psychology

PLAYWRIGHTS

Georg Bchner
(181337)
- died of typhoid fever at the
age of 23
- first modern playwright
- Dantons Tod (Danton's
Death), 1902, and Woyzeck,
1913

Ernst Toller
- was a German playwright
- in 1919 for six days as
President of the short-lived
Bavarian Soviet Republic, and
was imprisoned for five years
for his actions
- Man and the masses (1921)

(1 December 1893
22 May 1939)

- the Czech dramatist


- the role of spokesman
for the movement,
- coined the term
'Seelendrama', 'drama of
the soul (speak through
the actors body)

Paul Kornfeld
(1889-1942)

PLAY
STRUCTURE:
Plot, Character, Language

OVERALL THEME

THEATRICAL
ELEMENTS:
Sets, Lights, Sound,
Costumes, Masks

DECOR BLAGUE

JOB DESCRIPTION
ACTOR, DIRECTOR

AUDIENCE

PRINCIPLES
VERY EMOTIONALLY
CHARGED;
CAPTURES OUR
INNER STRUGGLE

DADAISM

-an artistic and literary movement


that began in Zrich, Switzerland

It arose as a reaction to World


War I and the nationalism
that many thought had led to
the war

-Dada's aesthetic, marked by its


mockery of materialistic and
nationalistic attitudes

FOUNTAIN
(1917) by
Marcel Duchamp.

SURREALISM

- Surrealism began in
1924 in France.

- They argued that the


subconscious is the
highest plane of reality.

- Their plays seem to be


set in a dream world

THE ACCOMMODATIONS OF DESIRE


(1929) By Salvador Dal

THEATRE OF

CRUELTY
ANTONIN ARTAUD

ANTONI
ARTAUD
N

BORN: 1897
DIED: 1948

ANTONI
ARTAUD
N

ATTEMPT: THEATRE OF MAGIC,


BEAUTY AND POWER
THAT WOULD CHANGE THE
HEARTS OF THE PEOPLE

ANTONI
ARTAUD
N

- ACTOR IN PARIS
- MOST BRILLIANT YOUNG
POET OF HIS TIME
1920 DIRECTING
JUNE 1, 1927 OWN
THEATRE COMPANY W/
WRITER ROGER VITAC

ANTONI
ARTAUD
N
DRAMATIC THEORY
THEATRE OF CRUELTY
INSPIRED BALINESE
DANCERS IN 1931

ANTONI
ARTAUD
N
1935: PLAY
1938: THE THEATRE AND
ITS DOUBLE

ANTONI
ARTAUD
N
HIS LIFE:
-POVERTY
-DESPAIR
-MENTAL ILLNESS
-FAILURES

THEATRE OF
CRUELTY

ARTAUDS VIEW
OF THE WORLD

- WWI
- GREAT DEPRESSION
- DICTATORS

- Life has no intristic


meaning
X God
X Pattern to human life
- born w/ nothing &
return to nothing

humans face up to the


pointlessness & absurdity
of life
free to take actions &
make decisions that
reflect the terrible
reality

THEATRE

LIFE

ARTAUDS
TECHNIQUES

Visual Poetry

- 1931 Balinese dancers


- Movement, gestures,
dance to communicate
- enormous emotional
impact

VISUAL
POETRY

VISUAL
POETRY
communicate feeling
about great human
mysteries of creation,
growth, and death in
ways that words cant

Assaulting the
Senses

ASSAULTING
THE
SENSES
Appeal to understanding
& intelligence

hypnosis - trance

ASSAULTING
THE
SENSES
shock & confrontation
film equipment
lights, music & sounds

Creating a
dreamworld

masks, ritual objects,


traditional and striking
costumes

movement, lights,
music

CREATING
A
DREAMWORLD

CREATING
A
DREAMWORLD

scenery

symbolic, distorted,
nightmarish

CREATING
A
DREAMWORLD

DREAM

emotions &
subconscious
mind

Involving the
Audience

INVOLVING
THE
AUDIENCE
Audience center of the
auditorium
they are a part of everything
happening

Skill of the actor

THE SKILL
OF THE
ACTOR
- highly trained
- use of voice & body w/
great skill
- totally committed
- emotional intensity

Deliberate Cruelty

DELIBERATE
CRUELTY
physical cruelty

attack on the emotion,


shock & involve
the audience

DELIBERATE
CRUELTY
Goal: change the
way people
perceive the world

Improvising the
Play

- process of important
events
- serious human concerns
- important themes from
existing plays
ex: conquest of Mexico by
Spain in 16th century

IMPROVISING
THE PLAY

EPIC THEATER

-popular in Germany after


World War I (1914-1918)

influenced
by:
1. horror of World War I

influenced
by:

2. suffering of middle
and lower classes during
postwar recessions of the
1920s and Great
Depression of the 1930s

influenced
by:
3. teachings of Marxism

ERWIN
PISCATOR
-Marxist director and
playwright
-originator of political theatre
-used still and cinematic
projections
-gave Dadaism its proletarian
twist

(1893-1966)

ERWIN
PISCATOR
(1893-1966)

-was in-charge of the Volksbuhne


-set up his own independent
company at the Theater am
Nollendorfplatz
-works: Rasputin, Konjunktur,
Schweik

BERTOLT
BRECHT
(1898-1956)

- extended the experiments


of Erwin Picastor
- wants theatre to be
analytical; should appeal
to reason not to emotion

1. theatricalism - the audience


should be aware that they
are in a theater, watching a
play
2. distancing - actors' balance
of "being" their character
onstage and "showing the
audience that the character
is being performed"

keys of his
technique: