Roman Theatres

Extracts from this essay...

Introduction

Classical Civilisation Prep Dominic Wong 8/3/2007 "Unfortunately, Roman theatre was so poor that a modern audience would find nothing to enjoy" Is this a fair assessment of Roman Theatre? The Romans had theatres like the Greeks. However, different from the Greek theatres (in which only solemn religious played were performed), theatrical performances in Roman theatres became more secular. Theatrical performances were different from other kinds of Roman entertainment, like gladiatorial fights and chariot racing, they had nothing to do with cruelty or bloodshed. Roman people could simply go into the theatre to relax and laugh. So therefore, theatres were very popular among the Roman people. However, in the 21st century, a modern audience might not enjoy the performance as much as the ancient Romans did.

Middle

It is difficult for modern people to enjoy shows in a Roman theatre, when they can choose to go to a modern theatre. In a Roman theatre, seats were arranged according to the social status of the audience: the best seats, right in front of the stage, were reserved for senators and visiting dignitaries; the fourteen front rows were for the Equites; women and men were seated separately. Also, in the back seats the people were crushed, but in the seats reserved for officials and aristocrats met as if at a party. This hierarchical seating arrangement is very unappealing in the modern society, where social equality is promoted.

Conclusion

Roman comedy was the most notable among the others (tragedy, saturae etc.), its plots which usually reversed the natural order of things, such as mistaken identities of twins, were so funny that it caused the audience to laugh. So therefore, the inviting and high-quality performances would make the audience forget about the poor conditions, and enjoy themselves throughout the show. In my opinion, the word "poor" is too harsh to describe the Roman theatre. I do agree that the conditions were not satisfying, however, the standard of the performances deserves much more than the comment "poor". Moreover, I do not agree that all audience would "find nothing to enjoy", most play admirers concern more about the play itself rather than how comfortably they sit. It is definite that many modern people (maybe not all) will enjoy themselves in a Roman theatre.

The above preview is unformatted text

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • Over 150,000 essays available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Over 180,000 student essays
  • Every subject and level covered
  • Thousands of essays marked by teachers

Related AS and A Level Theatre Studies

  1. 20th century innovators of theatre

    'The audience does not need to intervene or manifest itself in order to participate. It is a constant participant through its awakened presence.' De-urbanisation is a key innovation shared by both practitioners. This de-urbanisation was thought to have helped cleanse the acting company of the 'pollution's' of city life.

  2. How different were Greek theatres to modern theatres

    In ancient times in the centre of the orchestra there stood a statue of the patron God Dionysus. This was here to remind people who the theatre was in honour of. Sometimes in ancient times the plots of plays contained religious rituals and ceremonies which were performed at the altar.

  1. Drama and Theatre Studies structured records

    Additionally, through our research into the presentation of women in conventional medieval drama, we learnt the historical relevance of female roles. In a traditional damsel in distress story women are patronised and demeaned.

  2. Theatre of the Oppressed Theorised: Who, How, and What Comprises Forum Theatre's capacity to ...

    is a therapeutic one that embarks on the philosophy of cognitive science. Cognitive behavioural intervention incorporates cognitive activities into a human being with efforts to produce therapeutic change and suggests that one needs to draw on the faculty of knowing and perceiving in order to understand the human process of learning, understanding and behaving.

  1. Taming Of The Shrew & Much Ado About Nothing Plots

    He had two daughters, the eldest - Katharina, and the youngest - Bianca. The tradition of courtly love meant that the eldest daughter had to be married first.

  2. A trip to the Roman theatre

    "Yes mistress" "Liviana I do hope that you woke up early make the packed lunch, you should have also packed the cushions, mother told me that the seats are made out of hard stone and it is more comfortable for us to sit on cushions."

  • Over 180,000 essays
    written by students
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to write
    your own great essays

Marked by a teacher

This essay has been marked by one of our great teachers. You can read the full teachers notes when you download the essay.

Peer reviewed

This essay has been reviewed by one of our specialist student essay reviewing squad. Read the full review on the essay page.

Peer reviewed

This essay has been reviewed by one of our specialist student essay reviewing squad. Read the full review under the essay preview on this page.