Commedia in Gloucestershire

Rural contexts (2004 to 2010)

Authored by: Olly Crick

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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For Commedia enthusiasts, even the pragmatic ones, the main question is, “Can it work now?” Antonio Fava states that what was state of the art theatrical entertainment then is now irrelevant. A live performance cannot exist anywhere but in the eyes and ears of a living audience (Fava 2007: xiii). If one chooses to adopt historical performance tropes and perform them now, however deeply one immerses oneself in the subject, there will always be a tension. This tension lies between its historical strengths then, and how they might appear in front of a contemporary audience, now. Some of this can be resolved before one reaches the public, but some will only become obvious when face to face with them. What a performer or troupe should carry with it, is not the tales of Commedia’s past success, but what entertains now, and why.

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