Greek And Roman Art Essay

1875 Words 8 Pages
The Greek Theater:
     "The arts of the western world have been largely dominated by the artistic standards established by the Greeks of the classical period" (Spreloosel 86). It is from the Greek word theatron, meaning a place for sitting, that we get our word theater. According to James Butler, "The Greeks were the first people to erect special structures to bring audiences and theatrical performers together" (27). "The theaters were normally located near a populated area at the bottom of or cut out of a carefully selected, sloping hillside overlooking a seascape, a plain, or a city" (Butler 30). "They eventually with few exceptions consisted of three distinct parts: theatron
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     The third distinct part of the theater was the skene (scene building). "The earliest scene buildings were very simple wooden structures " (Butler 31). " Originally, the skene was a dressing room; later it is believed to have borne a painted backdrop" (Kennedy 1102). This area was known as the actors place. It was intended to provide a background against which actors could perform. "In Greek theater as we know it, the skene appears as a appendage, adjunct, breaking the perfect circularity of the design" (Arnott 13).
          Although the origin of the Greek theater is unclear, many historians believe that it developed out of religious ritual and its performances were connected to religious festivals. The performances were used to educate and entertain. "The theater is certainly not the same as it was in ancient
Greece - but it has not changed completely" (Taylor 8). This form of art has always had a Art has changed a great deal since it began many centuries ago. Centuries, however, are not necessary to notice the small changes that are evident even between cultures of similar times. Such is the case with the Greeks and Romans. Both cultures had exquisite pieces of art, but they were very different from each other. The amazing thing about art is