UR Scenery Is a Vital Aspect of Theatrical Productions Discussion: Film Answers 2022

UR Scenery Is a Vital Aspect of Theatrical Productions Discussion: Film Answers 2022

UR Scenery Is a Vital Aspect of Theatrical Productions Discussion: Film Answers 2022

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UR Scenery Is a Vital Aspect of Theatrical Productions Discussion

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The Theatre Experience
The Theatre Experience
Professor Emeritus
Graduate School and University
The City University of New York
Published by McGraw-Hill Education, 2 Penn Plaza, New York, NY 10121. Copyright ©
2020 by Edwin Wilson. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America.
Previous editions © 2015, 2011, and 2009. No part of this publication may be
reproduced or distributed in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or
retrieval system, without the prior written consent of McGraw-Hill Education, including,
but not limited to, in any network or other electronic storage or transmission, or
broadcast for distance learning.
Some ancillaries, including electronic and print components, may not be available to
customers outside the United States.
This book is printed on acid-free paper.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 LWI 21 20 19 18
ISBN 978-1-260-05607-5 (bound edition)
MHID 1-260-05607-4 (bound edition)
ISBN 978-1-260-49340-5 (loose-leaf edition)
MHID 1-260-49340-7 (loose-leaf edition)
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Cover Image: ©Sara Krulwich/The New York Times/Redux
Compositor: MPS Limited
All credits appearing on page or at the end of the book are considered to be an
extension of the copyright page.
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Wilson, Edwin, 1927- author.
The theatre experience / Edwin Wilson, Professor Emeritus, Graduate
School and University Center, The City University of New York.
Theater experience
Fourteenth Edition. | New York, NY : McGraw-Hill Education,
[2020] | “Previous editions 2015, 2011, and 2009.” | Includes
bibliographical references and index.
LCCN 2018047648 | ISBN 9781260056075 (student edition : alk. paper)
LCSH: Theater. | Theater—History.
LCC PN1655 .W57 2020 | DDC 792—dc23
LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2018047648
The Internet addresses listed in the text were accurate at the time of publication. The
inclusion of a website does not indicate an endorsement by the authors or McGraw-Hill
Education, and McGraw-Hill Education does not guarantee the accuracy of the
information presented at these sites.
About the Author
Teacher, author, and critic, Edwin Wilson has worked in many
aspects of theatre. Educated at Vanderbilt University, the
University of Edinburgh, and Yale University, he received an MFA
from the Yale School of Drama, as well as the first Doctor of Fine
Arts degree awarded by Yale. He has taught at Yale, Hofstra,
Vanderbilt, Hunter College, and the CUNY Graduate Center. At
Hunter, he served as chair of the Department of Theatre and Film
and head of the graduate theatre program. At CUNY, he was
executive director of the Center for the Advanced Study of
Theatre Arts, later known as the Martin E. Segal Theatre Center.
Edwin Wilson served as theatre critic for The Wall Street Journal
for twenty-three years. In addition to The Theatre Experience, he
is coauthor with Alvin Goldfarb of Living Theatre: A History,
published in its first six editions by McGraw-Hill and in its seventh
edition by W. W. Norton. He is also coauthor of Theatre: The
Lively Art and the Anthology of Living Theater, both also published
by McGraw-Hill. In addition he edited the volume Shaw on
Wilson was president of the New York Drama Critics Circle and
served for several terms on the Tony Nominating Committee and
the Pulitzer Prize Drama Jury. He is on the board of the John
Golden Fund and for thirty years was on the board of the Susan
Smith Blackburn Prize. He served for many years on the board of
the Theatre Development Fund, of which he was also president.
Before turning to teaching and writing, Edwin Wilson was
assistant to the producer for the film Lord of the Flies, directed by
Peter Brook, and the Broadway play Big Fish, Little Fish, directed
by John Gielgud. He produced several off-Broadway shows and
coproduced a Broadway play directed by George Abbott. He also
directed in summer and regional theatre, serving one season as
resident director of the Barter Theatre in Abingdon, Virginia, and
was executive producer of the film The Nashville Sound. As a
playwright, Wilson has had successful stage readings or
productions of a farce, a history play, a musical revue, and a
musical version of Dickens’s Great Expectations, for which he
wrote book and lyrics. He also authored a murder mystery, The
Patron Murders.
To the memory of my wife, Catherine.
Contents in Brief
Part 1 The Audience
1 The Audience: Its Role and Imagination
2 Background and Expectations of the Audience
3 Theatre Spaces
Part 2 The Performers and the Director
4 Acting for the Stage
5 The Director and the Producer
Part 3 The Playwright and the Play
6 Creating the World of the Play
7 Dramatic Structure and Dramatic Characters
8 Theatrical Genres
Part 4 The Designers
9 Scenery
10 Stage Costumes
11 Lighting and Sound
Part 5 The Theatre Today
12 Theatre Today: Traditional, Musical, Nontraditional, and
Political Theatre
13 Theatre Today: Diverse and Global
Plays That May Be Read Online
The Audience
Chapter 1 The Audience: Its Role and Imagination
(©Arctic-Images/Corbis Documentary/Getty Images)
The Mediated Arts: Film and Television
The Contrast between Theatre and Film
Theatre Is Transitory and Immediate
Human Beings—The Focus of Theatre
The Chemistry of the Performer–Audience Contact
Theatre as a Group Experience
Psychology of Groups
How Audience Composition Affects the Theatre
The Separate Roles of Performers and Spectators
How Should the Audience Be Involved?
Audience Participation through Direct Action
The Imagination of the Audience
Tools of the Imagination: Symbol and Metaphor
The “Reality” of the Imagination
The Imaginary Worlds of Theatre
Realistic Elements of Theatre
Nonrealistic Elements of Theatre
Combining the Realistic and the Nonrealistic
Distinguishing Stage Reality from Fact
Chapter 2 Background and Expectations of the Audience
(©Sara Krulwich/The New York Times/Redux)
Background of Individual Spectators
Background Information on the Play or Playwright
Background of the Period
Theatre and Society
Modern Theatre and Culture
Expectations: The Variety of Experiences in Modern
Broadway and Touring Theatre
Resident Professional Theatre
Alternative Theatre: Off-Broadway and Elsewhere
Young People’s and Children’s Theatre
College and University Theatre
Community and Amateur Theatre
The Critic, the Reviewer, and the Blogger
The Critic/Reviewer
Fact and Opinion in Criticism
Critical Criteria
The Dramaturg or Literary Manager
The Audience’s Relation to Criticism
The Audience’s Independent Judgment
Chapter 3 Theatre Spaces
(©T Charles Erickson)
Creating the Environment
Theatre Spaces
Proscenium or Picture-Frame Stage: History and
Arena Stage: History and Characteristics
Thrust Stage: History and Characteristics
Created and Found Spaces
All-Purpose Theatre Spaces: The Black Box
Special Requirements of Theatre Environments
Evaluating the Theatre Space
The Performers and the Director
Chapter 4 Acting for the Stage
(©Sara Krulwich/The New York Times/Redux)
Acting in Everyday Life
Social Roles
Personal Roles
Acting in Life versus Acting Onstage
Three Challenges of Acting
Making Characters Believable
Physical Acting: Voice and Body
Synthesis and Integration
Evaluating Performances
Chapter 5 The Director and the Producer
(©Boston Globe/Getty Images)
The Theatre Director
The Traditional Director
The Director and the Script
The Director’s Collaborator: The Dramaturg
The Auteur Director and the Postmodern Director
The Auteur Director
The Postmodern Director
The Director and the Production: The Physical
The Director’s Work with the Performers
The Director as the Audience’s Eye
Movement, Pace, and Rhythm
Technical Rehearsal
Dress Rehearsal
The Director’s Collaborator: The Stage Manager
The Director’s Power and Responsibility
The Producer or Managing Director
The Commercial Producer
Noncommercial Theatres
The Producer’s and Director’s Collaborator: The
Production Manager
Completing the Picture: Playwright, Director, and
Evaluating Directing
The Playwright and the Play
Chapter 6 Creating the World of the Play
(©Joan Marcus)
The Subject and Verb of Drama: People and Action
Structural Conventions: The Rules of the Game
Limited Space
Limited Time
Strongly Opposed Forces
A Balance of Forces
Incentive and Motivation
Creating Structure
Plot versus Story
The Opening Scene
Obstacles and Complications
Crisis and Climax
Point of View
The Dramatist’s Point of View
Society’s Point of View
Chapter 7 Dramatic Structure and Dramatic Characters
(©Robbie Jack/Corbis Entertainment/Getty Images)
Dramatic Structure
Characteristics of Climactic Structure
Characteristics of Episodic Structure
Combinations of Climactic and Episodic Form
Rituals as Dramatic Structure
Patterns as Dramatic Structure
Serial Structure
Structure in Experimental and Avant-Garde Theatre
Structure in Musical Theatre
Dramatic Characters
Extraordinary Characters
Representative or Quintessential Characters
Stock Characters
Minor Characters
A Narrator or Chorus
Nonhuman Characters
The Audience and Character Types
Juxtaposition of Characters
Orchestration of Characters
Chapter 8 Theatrical Genres
(©T Charles Erickson)
Types of Drama
Traditional Tragedy
Modern Tragedy
Heroic Drama
Bourgeois or Domestic Drama
Characteristics of Comedy
Techniques of Comedy
Forms of Comedy
What Is Tragicomedy?
Modern Tragicomedy
Theatre of the Absurd
Absurdist Plots: Illogicality
Absurdist Language: Nonsense and Non Sequitur
Absurdist Characters: Existential Beings
The Designers
Chapter 9 Scenery
(©Geraint Lewis)
The Audience’s View
The Scene Designer
A Brief History of Stage Design
Scenic Design Today
The Scene Designer’s Objectives
Elements of Scene Design
The Process of Scene Design
The Scene Designer’s Collaborators and the
Production Process
Designing a Total Environment
Evaluating Scene Design
Chapter 10 Stage Costumes
(©Robbie Jack/Corbis Entertainment/Getty Images)
Costumes for the Stage
Objectives of Costume Design
The Process of Costume Design
The Costume Designer at Work
The Costume Designer’s Resources
The Costume Designer’s Collaborators
Related Elements of Costume Design
Hairstyles and Wigs
Millinery, Accessories, and Crafts
Coordination of the Whole
Evaluating Costume Design
Chapter 11 Lighting and Sound
(©blanaru/iStock/Getty Images)
Stage Lighting
A Brief History of Stage Lighting
Objectives and Functions of Lighting Design
The Lighting Designer
Sound in the Theatre
The Sound Designer
Understanding Sound Reproduction and Sound
Sound Technology
Special Effects in Lighting and Sound
Evaluating Lighting and Sound Design
The Theatre Today
Chapter 12 Theatre Today: Traditional, Musical, Nontraditional, and
Political Theatre
(©Carol Rosegg)
Traditional Theatre
The American Musical
Nontraditional (Experimental or Alternative) Theatre
Multimedia Theatre
Environmental Theatre
Performance Art
Political Theatre
Chapter 13 Theatre Today: Diverse and Global
(©Sara Krulwich/The New York Times/Redux)
Feminist Theatre and Women Playwrights
Lgbtq Theatre
Diverse Multicultural Theatre
African American Theatre
Asian American Theatre
Latino/a Theatre
Native American Theatre
Global Theatre
Theatres in India, China, and Japan in the Modern
Theatres in the Middle East
African Theatres and Drama
Russia and Eastern Europe
Western Europe, Britain, and Ireland
Latin American Theatres
Australia and Canada Since World War II
Plays That May Be Read Online
The Theatre Experience prepares students to be well-informed,
well-prepared theatre audience members. With an audiencecentered narrative that engages today’s students, a vivid photo
program that brings concepts to life, and features that teach and
encourage a variety of skill sets, students master core concepts
and learn to think critically about theatre and the world around
them. As a result, students are better prepared for class, and
better prepared for theatregoing.
Engage with Your Role
• True to its original vision—to focus on the audience’s
experience of attending a live theatre performance—the
14th edition of The Theatre Experience opens with three
chapters that focus on the student as an audience
member. Topics include the difference between being at a
live performance and watching a dramatic performance on
film, TV, or an electronic device; the enhancement of the
experience aided by the proper preparation and background;
and the awareness of the role of the audience in live theatre.
(©VisitBritain/Eric Nathan/Getty Images)
• Play Links allow you to read many of the plays mentioned in
the text online. Any play referenced in the text that can be
found online is highlighted in blue typeface when first
mentioned in a chapter. Should you want to read one of
these plays, you can refer to the list that precedes the
Glossary at the end of the book and find its URL. Titles are
listed alphabetically.
The plays can be used to highlight key concepts and to
complement the discussions found in The Theatre
Experience, 14th edition. In addition, many of the new
“Thinking about Theatre” and “Experiencing Theatre”
exercises can also be supplemented and enhanced with
examples from these plays.
Master the Basics
Parts Two, Three, and Four cover the important elements of
theatre: acting, directing, playwriting, and design. The authors’
efficient structure and succinct style set up students for a clear
understanding of the basic concepts, freeing up valuable class
time for deeper discussions and more personal engagement with
course concepts.
Photo Essays and a dynamic art program allow students to
visualize the core theatrical concepts introduced in each chapter.
Topics include modern domestic drama (Chapter 8), forms of
comedy (Chapter 8), costumes and masks (Chapter 10), uses of
stage lighting (Chapter 11), and others.
Think Critically and Engage Actively
Based on feedback from instructors and students, the 14th edition
of The Theatre Experience offers both time-tested and newly
revised text features that help students deepen their
understanding and appreciation of the theatrical experience.
• “Playing Your Part” is a feature in each chapter that
includes two distinct sets of questions and activities that
emphasize thinking and engaging critically.
• “Experiencing Theatre” activities help students actively
engage with the concepts of the text. These exercises
ask students to undertake activities within the classroom
or to understand how aspects of their everyday lives
connect to core concepts discussed in the text.
1. If you were to write a play about your life, what would you
choose as your opening scene? What would some of your
complications be? Would there be a climactic moment?
2. If you were to write a play about a family you know (your
own or another), what point of view would you take? Why?
Are there strongly opposed forces or balanced forces in this
3. If you were told you were going to have to attend a play that
lasted over four hours, what would your reaction be? Why?
What are your traditional expectations about the space and
time of a play?
4. After watching a popular film, describe how the opening
scene aids in setting the action. Describe one or two of the
complications in the film. Can you discuss the film’s point of
• “Thinking about Theatre” questions challenge students
to analyze and examine elements of a theatre
1. Think of a play you have read or seen where the main
character encounters one impediment or roadblock after
another. Describe the various obstacles that must be
overcome before the end of the play.
2. Think of a play or musical you have seen or read where two
major characters are in conflict with one another. Describe
the two characters and explain the source of their conflict.
How does it play out?
3. Think of a situation some people saw as very serious, but
another person viewed as humorous. Explain what you
believe led different people to see it so differently. What was
your own feeling—was the incident funny or sad?
• “In Focus” boxes, also appearing in every chapter, help
students understand and compare different aspects of
theatre. They address historical perspectives on theatre,
contemporary applications of technology, issues of
theatrical structure, and global and other current issues
in theatre, such as color- blind and nontraditional casting.
Theatre artists such as Peter Brook and Josef Svoboda
are also featured.
The 14th edition of The Theatre Experience has been updated,
taking note of new talent that has appeared on the scene as well
as new approaches to writing, directing, acting, and design
presented in previous editions. New plays, new productions, new
approaches, and new subject matter have all been recognized
and explained. At the same time, well-established forerunners in
the theatre universe, whether Greek, Roman, Elizabethan, or
later, have been looked at anew.
The most significant changes in the 14th edition appear in Part
Five, “The Theatre Today.” This has been condensed to two
chapters from three, and detailed information on history has been
edited and reduced. This movement away from extensive theatre
history in Part Five has allowed more space for what is suggested
in the title of this section—the theatre today—therefore making
this edition of The Theatre Experience more relevant to today’s
instructors and learners alike.
All elements of today’s theatre are covered more thoroughly
and clearly. Subjects such as women’s theatre, LGBTQ theatre,
global theatre, and theatre of diversity are dealt with in more detail
and depth than in previous editions.
Selected Chapter-by-Chapter Changes
In addition to the major changes outlined earlier, we have included
significant new material throughout the text, including the
Chapter 1: The Audience: Its Role and Imagination
• The opening section of Chapter 1 has been completely
revised. In addition, a section titled “The Mediated Arts: Film
and Television” has been introduced.
Chapter 3: Theatre Spaces
• New description of the transformation of the Broadway
Imperial Theatre for the musical Natasha, Pierre & the Great
Comet of 1812 as an example of how space is a key
element of a production.
• The discussion of stage directions has been moved to this
chapter from the chapter on scenery to help students better
understand the proscenium theatre.
Chapter 4: Acting for the Stage
• More extensive discussion of contemporary acting techniques
and actor training.
• New “In Focus” box on technology and the actor.
Chapter 5: The Director and the Producer
• Extensive discussion of the responsibilities of the stage
manager and the casting director.
• New “In Focus” box on color-blind and nont…

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