academic theatre

   Study of dramatic literature at colleges and universities in the United States dates to well before the American Revolution. Before the middle of the 19th century, however, there is little evidence to suggest that plays were frequently performed on campuses or that the techniques of staging them were studied. Harvard University's Hasty Pudding Club began producing plays in 1844 with Lemuel Hayward's burlesque of a burlesque, Bombastes Furioso. Among those who participated during their student days were Robert E. Sherwood and Alan Jay Lerner.
   Other literary societies that sprang up at colleges after the Civil War sometimes mounted theatrical productions as extracurricular activities. Among these were Princeton University's Dramatic Association (1888), which ultimately became the Triangle Club, and the Mask and Wig Club at the University of Pennsylvania (1889). In 1881, Harvard students spent six months rehearsing Oedipus Rex in Greek for a performance considered to be the first of its kind in the United States.
   William O. Partridge, a Columbia University professor, called for the creation of drama classes and departments of theatre as early as 1886. Brander Matthews became the first professor of dramatic literature at Columbia University in 1902. The first formalized instruction in theatrical techniques appears to have been George Pierce Baker's English 47 course at Harvard, first offered in 1905. In 1912, Baker added the 47 Workshop for aspiring playwrights and the result was a generation of important writers, including Eugene O'Neill (who participated in the 47 Workshop in 1914-1915), Philip Barry, Sidney Howard, and others.
   Baker's course soon inspired other faculty at various institutions to offer theatre courses. Baylor, the University of North Dakota, DePauw, Swarthmore, the University of Iowa, Cornell, Columbia, Princeton, Smith, and others added theatre to the curriculum and as a regular feature of extracurricular activities. Carnegie Institute of Technology claims the first department of dramatic arts, established in 1914 under the guidance of Thomas Wood Stevens and Ben Iden Payne. In 1925, Baker, who had moved to Yale, set up a department of drama there. By the end of the 1920s, many colleges and universities had established academic departments (or at least regularly offered courses) in theatre.
   See also amateur theatres.

The Historical Dictionary of the American Theater. .

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Perm Academic Theatre — Infobox Theatre name = Perm Academic Theatre image size = 215px caption = Drama Theatre on July 21, 2006 address = city = Perm country = Russia designation = latitude = 58.008007 longitude = 56.216494 architect = V.P. Davydenko and V.I. Ljutikova …   Wikipedia

  • National Academic Theatre of Opera and Ballet of Mongolia — Coordinates: 47°55′07″N 106°55′11″E / 47.91861°N 106.91972°E / 47.91861; 106.91972 …   Wikipedia

  • Yanka Kupala National Academic Theatre — National academic theatre of Yanka Kupala ( be. Нацыянальны акадэмічны тэатр імя Янкі Купалы, Minsk) is the oldest theatre of Belarus. It was opened on September 14, 1920, it is located in a building of the Minsk provincial theatre, constructed… …   Wikipedia

  • theatre — /thee euh teuhr, theeeu /, n. theater. * * * I Building or space in which performances are given before an audience. It contains an auditorium and stage. In ancient Greece, where Western theatre began (5th century BC), theatres were constructed… …   Universalium

  • Academic dress — or academical dress is traditional clothing for academic settings, primarily tertiary and sometimes secondary education. It is also known as academicals and, in the United States, as academic regalia. Contemporarily, it is commonly seen only at… …   Wikipedia

  • Theatre Puget Sound — Theatre Puget Sound(TPS) is a not for profit organization devoted to supporting the performing arts in the Puget Sound area of Washington. It was founded in 1997.Both individuals and organizations can be members of Theatre Puget Sound. Currently …   Wikipedia

  • Theatre — For other uses, see Theatre (disambiguation). Sarah Bernhardt as Hamlet, in 1899 Theatre (or in American English theater[1]) is a collaborative form of fine art that uses live performers to present the experience …   Wikipedia

  • theatre, Western — ▪ art Introduction       history of the Western theatre from its origins in pre Classical antiquity to the present.       For a discussion of drama as a literary form, see dramatic literature and the articles on individual national literatures.… …   Universalium

  • Theatre Journal — Infobox Journal discipline = Performing arts abbreviation = THJ website = journal/index.html publisher = Johns Hopkins University Press country = USA history = 1949 to present ISSN = 1086 332X Theatre… …   Wikipedia

  • Theatre Topics — Infobox Journal discipline = Performing arts abbreviation = TTO website = journal/index.html publisher = Johns Hopkins University Press country = USA history = 1991 to present ISSN = 1054 8378 Theatre… …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.