The Convention of Elizabethan Theater
The plays were conducted in various locations across England but soon relocated to London. In particular, they were performed in purpose built theaters such as The Theater, The Globe, The Swan, The Curtain, Cockpit, and Blackfriars. In most of these facilities, the structures were wooden and deigned with three galleries stack above each other. Nevertheless, they were categorized as either open-air amphitheatres or private ones that contained halls and were rectangular. They too were enclosed. While the former were frequented by almost anyone, the latter catered to an exclusive clientele thereby justifying the exorbitant fees that were charged.
All the actors in the plays had to be male and they were supposed to master more than three characters. While there were about forty roles within the play, a minimum of 15 individuals could be used to stage the production. However, it was common for the actors to change their costume and acting style in order to portray a different character each time. Furthermore, most of them chose between playing romantic or tragic heroes with their income depending on everyone’s position within the company. However, ‘boy actors ‘were the male actors whose roles sometimes required them to play female characters.
Members of the clergy were common playwrights during this time. However, subsequent years witnessed a surge in dramatists showing interest and implementing their desire to write and produce the plays. As such, university graduates were among the earliest playwrights. Likewise, uneducated but visibly talented individuals such as Shakespeare were involved in the same. He experimented with different production styles such as comedy and tragedy. In addition, academic administrators such as Nicholas Udall also became part of the earliest. Thomas Sackville and Thomas Norton were responsible for Gorboduc while Marlowe initiated the reflection of the monarchy in plays by staging Edward II. Thomas Kyd also launched the appearance of comedy in tragic scenes as well.
The Elizabethan Theater plays were done during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I in 1558. It was deemed an appropriate time to stage the plays since new laws had been enacted to control the activities of beggars and other wanderers who traveled across the country in search of performance venues. She also introduced new measures to regulate the industry by requiring actors to be duly registered in reputable establishments. As such, the industry was experiencing a renaissance during her reign and wanted to honor the new changes. Moreover, the queen was an ardent fun of the theaters and the producers were quick to capitalize on her reign.
Edmund Tylney, born in 1541was the master of the revels during the reign of Queen Elizabeth I. therefore, he was in charge of organizing royal entertainment festivals. His father was part of royalty while his mother was found guilty of being an accomplice in scandal and was imprisoned for life. Whereas he learnt different languages, his educational records are not known. He soon gained favor with the monarchy and upon being appointed in the revels office, he began making transformations of its functions. Having married Dame Mary Braye, he settled in his new position and made some controversial decisions that plagued his tenure. For example, he assumed censorship duties for all drama activities within the country. Whereas that made him to restrict the activities of writers, he won their admiration by defending them from harsh civic authorities. Upon the ascension of James I to the throne, he continued in the same capacity until his death in 1610.
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