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the empty space

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Introduction

The Empty Space, By Peter Brook. Having read The Empty Space by Peter Brook. I will be discussing all that I have learnt about the different form of theatre he discusses. He tries to categories theatre into four different types of theatre. These categories are; The Deadly Theatre, The Holy Theatre, The Rough Theatre and finally, The Immediate Theatre. The first category I shall be discussing is The Deadly Theatre. Firstly The Deadly Theatre, this is the form of theatre we see most often. As theatre audience are falling around the world and this is because it fails to entertain. However the author does appreciate that occasionally there are new movements with good writers. The author goes on to compare theatre as a whore. He believes that its art is dirty and robs your money and doesn't deliver the entertainment required to warrant an expensive admittance. Mr Brooks makes the statement that there is no true theatre joy as The Deadly Theatre is not only found in the commercial West End or Broadway but also is making its way into Opera and even Shakespeare. This is because Brooks makes the very true statement that even though universally we find these Shakespearean productions marvellous to look at with their grand sets, costumes and are drawn to the theatre because a popular actor maybe in it. However if we were to sit through the production the majority would be truly bored as it isn't anything different from previous Shakespeare production of the same play or different plays. ...read more.

Middle

He uses the examples of jazz and classical music artist getting a more mainstream audience as an example. Brooks says that if we were to recognise how far what we assume is to be holy theatre has drifted from what the holy theatre should be we have discarded the notion that the fine theatre of the 1940's should ever return. Within the Holy Theatre Brook explains the idea of been "shown" by an actor and the interesting debate on the function of the spectator. He says a spectator is either there or not. By that he means with the actor, appreciating the theatre and understanding it and the "not" is quite simply lost and bored with it all. He says an actor's work isn't for an audience it is only for them. Only they are truly engaging the theatre and the "partner" - the audience- must be forgotten yet still constantly be kept in mind. Brook quotes the theories of Artaud and says that for Artaud this is a signal through flames. Yet this would imply that a sharing experience once contact is made. In Artaud search of the holy theatre he wanted and absolute theatre Brook then explores the Theatre of Absurd and the search of naturalism and truth with in it. Brooks say the absurd does not seek the unreal for its own sake; it has used the unreal to make explorations for the audience. This is because the Absurd sensed the absence of the truth in our everyday exchanges and the presence of the truth in far-fetched situation i.e. ...read more.

Conclusion

Essentially the immediate is now. Now I didn't fully understand Peter Brooks's theories. Found some of his points interesting and thought provoking. Particularly the point he makes that actors act for themselves and audiences are only passive and isn't truly engaging in the drama. I also found his opening line to be a very interesting statement to make - "I can take an empty space and call it a bare stage. A man walks across this empty space whilst someone else is watching him, and this is all needed for an act of theatre to be engaging" basically what I believe what brook is trying to explain is that in the theatre we ask the same questions we do if we were to observe society from a coffee shop or park bench and watch people. We would ask why is he walking quickly? What is their relationship like? Why are they behaving like that? Why aren't they doing that? All these questions get asked on stage when something happens, when an actor does a certain movement or says a word in a manner we ask these questions. I don't think that theatre is an escape from the real world only a tool to see what it could be as none of us truly know. Back to the opening sentences we are all theatre. Should I walk across a road and a car comes the driver stops. He has engaged me and should we strip Brooks theories down to the bones this could be class as an engaging piece of theatre. ...read more.

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