Category Archives: 2 Vulgar Comedy

The Street as Venue (Part 2)

When it comes to Commedia dell’Arte and other masked theatre that are using entrées and sorties we need a backdrop. We don’t want the actors to vanish away in a distance. Since it is easy for the wind to make … Read the rest of this entry

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The Street as Venue

Vulgar Comedy has its roots as street theatre, or at least outdoor theatre. Long before the Greeks began building theatres for their dithyrambs and plays there where Thespis and his cart. One can still trace much of business onstage to … Read the rest of this entry

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Understanding the mask

The task of the mask is to enlarge and, at the same time, clarify the character of the mask/role. We have already mentioned that the masks are representing archetypes, that they are driven by their urges, appetites and desires rather … Read the rest of this entry

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To play mask

The mask demands in itself vast energy. If the actor doesn’t “fill” the mask it doesn’t come to life. Everyone who has seen an actor act in a mask without the energy it demands, with movements just like ordinary life, … Read the rest of this entry

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A few dogmas, concerning mask acting

To act in a mask is a technique in itself. It means that there is a lot of rules of how to handle the mask. Sometimes they are really helpful, sometimes we find there are just too many guardians of … Read the rest of this entry

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3 reasons mask doesn’t use psychology

The characters of the masks are made of their physical limitations, posture, gestures and so on. It is only the outer of the masks that make up their character. There is no psychology possible, since it does not go through … Read the rest of this entry

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Western bias of the mask

In the west we tend to think about the mask as something to hide behind, as if it were a tool to hide emotions, intentions or reactions. Nothing can be more wrong. The masks always tell the truth – it … Read the rest of this entry

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What is a mask?

A mask can be anything from a small clown nose to giant heads to be worn on big gantries. It can sometimes be hard to tell the difference between masks and puppets, make-up, costume, even props. I would define a … Read the rest of this entry

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Vulgar Comedy and the Church (Part 5 – Opposition to theatre and comedy)

In the sixteenth century we also see how puritanism gain power and how and the Counter Reformation takes place. They wanted to purify the popular culture. They tried to stop the carnival and official festivities, since they though that the … Read the rest of this entry

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Vulgar Comedy and the Church (Part 3 – the Corpus Christi and the forming of comedy companies)

One example of how the theatre was used by the church was in the nativity scene. The first one was shown in 1223 by Francisco of Assisi. From the first puppets where used but soon the roles were played by … Read the rest of this entry

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