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Lecture 23

THAR 280 Lecture 23: shakespeare and the elizabethan playing space

Theatre Arts
Course Code
THAR 280

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Shakespeare & The Elizabethan Playing Space
Friday, December 2, 2016
12:40 PM
Elizabethan Playhouses
Bubonic Plague
Theatre closures 1593, 1603, 1608
Elizabethan Scenery
Did’t use paited perspetive flats
Stage did not represent one specific location
Used properties (props) to show location
Entrances and exits of characters showed location changes
But they still had spectacle
Private Theatres
Indoor (or hall)
Small and intimate
Accommodated between 600-750
Higher admission costs
Stage extended across the length of the back wall
Gave an opportunity for monarchs to see plays outside
Blackfriars Playhouse
Still around
Most popular playhouse of the time
Very opulent
Public theatres
Outdoor (or amphitheater)
Accommodated between 1500-3000 people
Lower admission costs
Platform stage
Thrust stage (came out into audience)
Neutral playing space
The Rose
Public theatre
The Swan
One of the largest stages in Elizabethan theatre
Had a place for important people to sit
The Globe
Had three tiers of acting and seating
Built of the material from the first theatre in London
Burned down in 1613, rebuilt in 1614
find more resources at
find more resources at
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