In this fascinating and accessible book, David Wiles introduces ancient Greek theatre to students and enthusiasts interested in knowing how the plays were performed. Theatre was a ceremony bound up with fundamental activities in ancient Athenian life and Wiles explores those elements which created the theatre of the time. Actors rather than writers are the book's main concern and Wiles examines how the actor used the resources of story-telling, dance, mask, song and visual action to create a large-scale event that would shape the life of the citizen community. The book assumes no prior knowledge of the ancient world, and is written to answer the questions of those who want to know how the plays were performed, what they meant in their original social context, what they might mean in a modern performance and what can be learned from and achieved by performances of Greek plays today.
• Specially written for students of theatre history: suitable for courses on Greek drama, tragedy, theatre history surveys - could be main textbook to support chosen dramatic play-texts • Accessible and informative textbook with paragraphs headed with key topics • David Wiles well known in field
1. Myth; 2. Ritual; 3. Politics; 4. Gender; 5. Space; 6. The performer; 7. The writer; 8. Reception; Notes; Further reading; Chronology.
'Wiles' book could become a catalyst for joint seminars for language and non-language students (whether in classical civilization or theatre studies. Neither should its impact be restricted to students. Most classicists will learn a great deal from it … Wwiles' study will become one of the most important books for shaping the way in which Greek theatre is conceived and debated.' Hermathena
'Wiles has managed to pack a lot of useful information and many inspiring ideas into thisb ook which is not too long. I can sincerely recommend [the book] to all translators and directors who are working with a production of any ancient drama, as well as to every classicist who is interested in (re)performances of ancient dramas.' Arctos