Shakespeare’s Clown Connection

Hybridizing Commedia’s Zanni

Authored by: Sara Romersberger

The Routledge Companion to Commedia dell’Arte

Print publication date:  December  2014
Online publication date:  November  2014

Print ISBN: 9780415745062
eBook ISBN: 9781315750842
Adobe ISBN: 9781317613374


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Commedia dell’Arte and the plays created by Shakespeare shared many common roots, despite evolving into distinctive and separate beasts. Their creators were educated in the emerging neo-classical tradition, and were among the first early modern theatre professionals in Europe, literally making up the rules as they went along. These rules were highly influenced by local and national politics, the country-urban divide, the power and relationship between church and state, as well as many local cultural factors such as high days, feast days, local carnival and midsummer.

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