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Stagecraft in the Tempest

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Examine The Dramatic Techniques That Shakespeare Uses To Explore The Theme Of Power In IIIii And Ivi Of 'The Tempest' Stagecraft is a theatrical term referring to the technical parts of theatrical, film, and video production. It includes, constructing and rigging scenery, hanging and focusing of lighting, design and shape of costumes, makeup, and recording and mixing of sound. Stagecraft is the part that differentiates a book from a play, or alternatively, the ability to make a story more realistic. Stage directions are one of the stagecrafts that a director would have to use in 'The Tempest'. Stage directions are very important as without them it would just be like someone reading out a poem in a hall. A director has to think of stage directions for every single line. I will just give an example of a few in Act IIIii. On lines 2-3, Stephano says "servant monster, drink to me". Over here it is obvious what Caliban has to do. There are many things that a director has to think about when Stephano says this line. He has to provide a bottle for Caliban to drink from and he has to command the actor to exaggeratedly drink and then maybe stagger around away from the bottle with a pained look on his face. ...read more.


his "unregal" side "I will supplant some of your teeth" Stephano forgets his act and he turns on Trinculo like a mother protecting her cubs. This is an example of slapstick comedy; he starts slapping Trinculo like he's a clown on a stage. This also shows how again Stagecraft can make a play on a stage quite a powerful experience. Next is the subject of Metatheatre. Metatheatre is when a playwright includes a play inside their play, or an author including a story inside their story. It is also to show the audience that what they're watching is a play and not real life. Normally metatheatre is used to teach a lesson to the audience. Metatheatre is used in 'The Tempest' when Prospero makes a play for Ferdinand and Miranda's wedding. Its supposed to teach us that just like it dissolved into thin air when it finished so to life and everything around us is temporary and nothing can have too much power as one day it too will just 'dissolve' or 'die' or 'rot and fade away'. It is mentioned in Prospero's speech about the "great globe" when he says "our revels now are ended. ...read more.


The main point of these clothes are to distract Caliban, Trinculo and Stephano. Whilst they are distracted, Prospero intends to "plague them all". Once we see these clothes we know that this is going to be a funny scene and indeed it is. (The next part is also funny as the 'majestic' Stephano and his followers are not really looking like kings at all, in fact they are looking more like tramps all wet from the swamp of mud smelling like "horse piss". This is another example of costumes stagecraft) Caliban sees straight through these clothes but Trinculo and Stephano don't and they start trying them on. We see from this that Caliban is not as stupid as he appears and Stephano and Trinculo are as stupid as they look, it shows who is the cleverest of the three and it shows that all Stephano attempts to be regal have not worked and they are gone as quickly as they came with just one little distraction. These are just a couple of points on the theme of power and stagecraft used in 'The Tempest' and there are also many others proving that there are clear advantages of telling a story by way of a play, than simply in a novel. ...read more.

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