Theatre: The Lively Art / Edition 8

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In its outstanding eighth edition, Theatre: The Lively Art remains the best-selling Introductory Theatre text for Theatre Appreciation courses. It incorporates a number of elements in one volume:

  • An introduction to the audience‚Äôs experience of theatre
  • An investigation of the elements of theatre: the audience; the text; theatre artists, including actors, directors, theatrical space; and scenic, costume, lighting and sound design
  • A study of the important developments in the history of theatre

Several qualities set Theatre: The Lively Art apart from other introductory texts. A particularly important element is our emphasis on the audience. All students reading the book are potential theatregoers, not just during their college years but throughout their lives. We have therefore attempted to make Theatre: The Lively Art an ideal one-volume text to prepare students as future audience members. It will give them a grasp of how theatre functions, of how it should be viewed and judged, and of the tradition behind any performance they may attend.

In addition to serving as an ideal text for non-majors, Theatre: The Lively Art will also prepare students who wish to continue studies in theatre, as majors, minors, or students from other disciplines who take advanced courses.

...The Lively Art emphasizes the visual dimension of the theater with a four-color interior, revised illustration program, and a new photo essay that chronicles the development and production of a play from concept to curtain call.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780073514208
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Higher Education
  • Publication date: 1/13/2012
  • Edition number: 8
  • Pages: 448
  • Sales rank: 58,632
  • Product dimensions: 7.90 (w) x 9.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Ed Wilson is both a leading figure in the New York theatre scene as well as a nationally recognized theatre educator and author. Unlike any other author of theatre texts, he brings both extensive professional New York theatre and educational theatre perspectives to his works.

For twenty-two years Ed was the theater critic of the Wall Street Journal. He has served on the Tony Nominating Committee and the Pulitzer Prize Drama Jury. A long time member of the New York Drama Critics Circle, he was president of the Circle for several years. He is on the board of the John Golden Fund and was also for many years on the Board of the Theater Development Fund, of which he served as President.

Ed has produced plays on and off Broadway and served one season as the resident director of the Barter Theatre in Abingdon, Virginia. He also produced a feature film, The Nashville Sound, recently made available on DVD. He is the author of two original plays, a farce, The Bettinger Prize, and a play about Ponce de Leon, Waterfall. He wrote the book and lyrics for a musical version of Great Expectations. All three have been given a series of successful readings in New York City and elsewhere. Great Expectations was given a full production for three weeks at the Mill Mountain Theatre in Roanoke, Virginia. He conceived the idea of a musical revue of the songs of Jerome Kern which had a well-received try-out production at Catholic University in Washington, D.C.

Ed is also an author on three of the most widely used college theater texts in the U. S. The twelfth edition of his pioneer book, The Theatre Experience, was published in 2011 by McGraw-Hill. The eighth edition of his text Theater: The Lively Art (co-authored with Alvin Goldfarb) has just been released. The sixth edition of Living Theatre: History of Theatre (also co-authored with Alvin Goldfarb), was published in 2012; it is the most widely adopted theatre history textbook in the United States and is also available in Italian and Korean versions. Wilson and Goldfarb have also edited three editions of Anthology of Living Theatre. Ed is also the editor of Shaw on Shakespeare, most recently re-issued by Applause Books.

Ed has taught at Vanderbilt, Yale, Hunter College and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. He was also the Executive Director of the Segal Theatre Center at the CUNY Graduate Center. Ed attended Vanderbilt, the University of Edinburgh, and Yale University where he received the first Doctor of Fine Arts degree awarded by Yale.

Alvin (Al) Goldfarb is a nationally known theatre educator and administrator. Al served as chair of the department of Theatre, Dean of Fine Arts, and Provost and Academic Vice President at Illinois State University. While at Illinois State University, he taught many students who have gone on to significant professional careers in Chicago theatres (including members of the Steppenwolf Theatre Company), in regional theatres across the country, on Broadway, as well as in film and television. Al served as President of Western Illinois University from 2002 to 2011, where he led the successful campaign to build a new Performing Arts Center, just as he had done at Illinois State University. He now holds the title President Emeritus at Western and continues to teach theatre.

Throughout his distinguished administrative career, Al continued to teach and publish. He has published articles and reviews in leading journals. With Ed Wilson, he is the coauthor of Living Theatre: A History and Theatre: the Lively Art as well as coeditor of The Anthology of Living Theater. Al is also the coeditor, with Rebecca Rovit, of Theatrical Performance during the Holocaust: Texts, Documents, Memoirs, which was a National Jewish Book Award finalist.

Al served as a member of the Illinois Arts Council and president of the Illinois Alliance for Arts Education. He has received a service award from the latter organization as well as the Kennedy Center Gold Medallion from the American College Theater Festival. Al also received alumni achievement awards from the City University of New York Graduate Center's Alumni Association and from Hunter College of C.U.N.Y.

Al received his B.A. from Queens College of C.U.N.Y., graduating Phi Beta Kappa, his M.A. from Hunter College of C.U.N.Y., where he studied with renowned theatre artists and educators, including Harold Clurman, Donald Oenslager, and Vera Roberts, and his Ph.D. from the City University of New York Graduate Center.

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Table of Contents

Experiencing Theater
Theater as an Art Form
What is Art?/The Art of Theater
Part 1: Creating Theatre
Chapter 1: Audiences and Critics
The Theater Audience
The "Audience Factor"/ How the Audience
Participates/ Diversity of Audiences
African American Theater
Asian American Theater
Hispanic Theater
Native American Theater
Feminist Theater
Gay and Lesbian Theater
The Theater Critic
What Is Criticism?/ Critics and Reviewers/ Preparing for Criticism/ Criteria for Criticism/ Descriptive versus Prescriptive Criticism
Chapter 2: Stage Performers A Historical Perspective: Demands of Classical Acting Three Challenges of Acting Mastering the Craft of Acting/ Making Characters Believable/ Synthesis and Integration Judging Performances Summary
Chapter 3: Directors and Producers
The Director
Evolution of the Director/ The Auteur Director/ The Director at Work/ The Director's Collaborators
The Producer or Manager
Producers in Commercial Theater/Noncommercial Theaters
Chapter 4: Theater Spaces
Proscenium or Picture-Frame Stage: History and Characteristics
Thrust Stage: History and Characteristics
Arena Stage: History and Characteristics
Created or Found Spaces
Multifocus Environments
All-Purpose and Experimental Spaces
Chapter 5: Designers: Secenery and Costumes
Scene Design
The Scene Designer's Objectives/ Physical Aspects of Scene Design/ The Process of Scene Design
Costume Design
The Costume Designer's Responsibilities/ The Costume Designer's Objectives/ Elements of Costume Design/ The Costume Designer's Collaborators
Chapter 6: Lighting and Sound
Stage Lighting
Lighting in Theater History/ Objectives of Lighting Design/ Qualities of Stage Lighting/ The Lighting Designer's Resources/ The Lighting Designer's Collaborators
Sound Design
Sound Reproduction and Sound Reinforcement/ Sound Technology
Special Effects in Lighting and Sound
The Playwright's Centrality
The Playwright's Tasks
Focus and Emphasis
Dramatic Purpose
Point of View: Dramatic Genres
What is Genre?/ Tragedy/ Comedy/ Heroic Drama/ Melodrama/ Domestic or Bourgeois Drama/ Tragicomedy
Chapter 8: The Text: Dramatic Genres
Structure in Drama
Essentials of Dramatic Structure/ Creating a Dramatic Structure/ Two Basic Structures: Climactic and Episodic/ Other Dramatic Structures
Creating Dramatic Characters
Types of Dramatic Characters/ Juxtaposition of Characters
Chapter 9: Profile of Production
Part 2: Theater Tradition and Theater Today
Chapter 10: Greek and Roman Theater
Origins of Theater G
Background: The Golden Age of Greece/ Theater and Culture: Greek Theater Emerges/ Greek Tragedy/ Greek Comedy/ Theater Production in Greece/ Dramatic Criticism in Greece: Aristotle/ Later Greek Theater
Background: Rome and Its Civilization/Theater and Culture in Rome/Popular Entertainment in Rome/Roman Comedy: Plautus and Terence/Roman Tragedy: Seneca/Dramatic Criticism in Rome: Horace/Theater Production in Rome/Decline of Roman Theater
Chapter 11: Asian and Medieval Theater
The Middle Ages
Background: Medieval Europe/Theater and Culture in the Middle Ages/Medieval Drama: Mystery, Miracle, and Morality Plays/Medieval Theater Production
Background: Asian Theater/Theater in India/Theater in China/Theater in Japan
Chapter 12: Renaissance Theater
Background: The Renaissance Era/Italian Theater: Commedia dell'Arte/ Italian Dramatic Rules: The Neoclassical Ideals/Theater Production in Italy
Background: Elizabethan England/Elizabethan Drama/Elizabethan Theater Production/Theater After Elizabeth's Reign
Background: The Spanish Golden Age/Spanish Drama/Theater Production in Spain
France Background: France in the Seventeenth Century/French Drama: The Neoclassical Era/Theater
Production in France
Chapter 13: Theater from 1660 TO 1875
The English Restoration
Background: England in the Seventeenth Century/Restoration Drama: Comedies of Manners/Theater
Production in the Restoration
The Eighteenth Century
Background: A More Complex World/Eighteenth-Century Drama: New Dramatic Forms/Theater Production in the Eighteenth Century
The Nineteenth Century
Background: A Time of Social Change/Theater in Nineteenth-Century Life/Nineteenth-Century Dramatic
Forms/Theater Production in the Nineteenth Century
Chapter 14: Modern Theater: 1875 TO 1945
The Birth of Realism
Background: The Modern Era/Theatrical Realism/Realistic Playwrights /Realism and Naturalism/Producers of Realism: Independent Theaters/Realistic Theater between 1915 and 1945 De
Partures from Realism
Antirealist Playwrights: Ibsen, Strindberg, and Wedekind/ Symbolism/ Antirealist Designers: Appia and Craig/Russian Theatricalism: Meyerhold/Early Eclectics/De
Parture From Realism: 1915-1945
Totalitarianism, the Second World War, and Theater
Chapter 15: Modern Theater: 1945 TO 1990
Postwar Realistic Theater
Background: The Postwar Era/American Selective Realism/The "Angry Young Men" in England and Documentary Drama in Germany
Experimentation and De
Partures from Realism: 1945 to 1980
Existentialism and Theater of the Absurd/Experimental Theater /Postwar Eclectics
Developments in Postwar American Theater
African American Theater/Musical Theater/Alternatives to Commercial Theater
Chapter 16: Contemporary Trends
The End of the Century
Today's Theater: Diversity and Eclecticism
Feminist Theater/ Performance Art/ Postmodernism/ International Trends
Today and Tomorrow: A Look Ahead
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