Σάββατο, 25 Αυγούστου 2012

Ancient Greek theaters
part 1


The ancient Greek theater is a part of our past and present. The influence of the architecture of ancient theater in shaping today's theaters are evident in cinemas and other places of public assembly such as university auditoriums. So each day we live a little bit of our ancient heritage, whether we are in Greece or not.
The ancient theaters were everywhere, in every city and in every sanctuary, of a certain size, were used for religious rituals,music and poetry contests, plays, meetings of the municipality or parliament of the city-state, they where even used as the market, also known as “agora”. In fact, the theaters that existed in ancient Greece exceed in number those been found and maybe ever to be found. This is largely due to the way they where constructed during the Archaic period. They used to be built in natural hollows of the ground and formed with only minor interventions in space or transportation of soil. Unlike stone structures, these theaters are extremely difficult to identify in the archaeological excavations.

By Kate Alabasini
Translation: Sofia Drivas 
Read this article in greek
  
The ancient theaters, architectural consisted of the orchestra, the square where the actors also known as “hypocrites” and the dance took place -in early periods of history- and the auditorium, where the sloping piece was, and last the seats of the spectators. In the 5th century BC the composition of the theater added a scene which started as a single-story and was used as backstage. During the Early Hellenistic Period, the scene became two-storied, with the roof from the ground floor protruding below the first floor forming a balcony. From the 2nd century.
B.C. action of actors, “hypocrites” was transferred onto this balcony, called a “logeion”.
Many of us know little about the importance of ancient Greek theaters. To make up for this gap in knowledge we must take a look at our past.

Ancient Theater of Epidaurus
The ancient theater of Epidaurus is in the same space as Asklepios Epidaurus near the village Lygourio. It is considered the finest ancient Greek theater in terms of acoustics and aesthetics.
The ancient theater was built between 340 BC and 330 BC by an architect from Argos called Polykleitos the younger. The theater was built to entertain the patients of Askleipeios and was also used for theraputic reasons as it was believed that watching theatrical plays had beneficial effects on mental and physical health of patients. The cult of Asclepius was framed by athletic and artistic events and performances such as drama. Thus, the events that took place in the theater where considered an integral and essential part of the festive happenings in honor of the doctor-god.
The ancient theater had a capacity of 13,000 spectators. Divided into two parts, the top 21 rows of seats for the people and the bottom with 34 rows of seats for the priests and rulers. The architectural form of the stage of the theater of Epidaurus shows that it intended to present dramas in a certain form that was finalized in Athens in the 5th century BC. Contrary to what happened in other theaters of the classical or Hellenistic times, this theater did not undergo reformation during Roman times and thus maintained its original form until the end of the ancient era. The prevailing scientific view was constructed in two phases. The first placed at the end of the 4th century, somewhere at the end of the first prime era of Asklepios accompanied by significant construction development, while the second phase is placed at the middle of the 2nd BC century.

The theater of Epidaurus was revealed after excavations carried out by archaeologist P. Kavadias, under the auspices of the Athens Archaeological Society during the period 1870-1926. A few years later, in 1938 came the first performance at the ancient theater of Epidaurus, Electra by Sophocles starring Katina Paxinou and Helen Papadakis. The performances then stopped because of World War II. In the early '50s, the theater underwent restoration work in order to accept a large number of spectators and in 1955 the Epidaurus Festival was inagurated which included performances at the ancient theater every summer. As part of the “Epidavros Festival” Epidavros has hosted many Greek and foreign actors and also the famous Greek soprano Maria Callas.


References (for all tree parts):

Δεν υπάρχουν σχόλια:

Δημοσίευση σχολίου