Difference between Greek and Modern Theatres

1514 Words Sep 26th, 2013 7 Pages
The Difference between Greek and Modern theatres
Kimberly Legaspi
February 25th, 2013
Word count: 1478

Difference between Greek and Modern Theatres

Theatre today as in ancient Greek times is a popular form of entertainment. Today’s theatres share many similarities with the Greek predecessors however they are also very different. There are in fact many differences for example; layout, special effects, seating arrangement, the importance of drama and religion, setting, location and architectural features.

In ancient Greece festivals were mainly held at the Great Dionysia. This was the oldest theatre in Greece and many plays were performed here for example the first performance of Antigone. The patron of the theatre was the God
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Today special effects in modern theatres are taken for granted by the audiences. Flashing lights, smoke, electronic sound and even microphones for actors were all not available to the ancient Greeks. In ancient times there special effects included; cranes for lifting actors into the air and ekkyklema (a trolley used to roll on stage via the central doors to carry away dead bodies. Many of these effects are not used to today as modern audiences want the play to be as realistic as possible and many of these effects would not achieve this. But today they still use wires in order to make actors appear to be flying; this is similar to the machine but more advanced to do modern technologies.

At the back of the ancient Greek theatre stood the ‘skene’. The word ‘skene’ means stage building. The ‘skene’ was a wooden building where the actors could change and this building could also be used for as a house or temple or any other part of scenery (Gill). At the front of the
‘skene’ there was a large double door for the actors to make their entrance. Actors could also enter through the ‘parados’ if they were acting as characters from foreign lands or who had just arrived (University Press Inc). There were three areas where the actors could act; the platform in front of the stage building, the orchestra and the roof of the stage building. The roof of the stage building was often
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