The basis of this website is a lecture given by Roger Dunkle, professor at Brooklyn College Classics Department, on the subject of the Roman comedy 'Miles gloriosus' ('The Swaggering Soldier') by Plautus (c.250-184BC). The site is divided into sections devoted to different aspects of the play. These include: the figure of the clever slave (a Plautine stock character) and the comedy of intrigue around which the plot is based; the character of the soldier; the supporting characters; and comic devices and conventions. This last section is the most detailed and of the broadest interest for the study of Roman comedy, as it looks at many of the generic techniques employed by the comic playwright. Included are: mistaken identity; surprise/incongruity; coincidence; hyperbole; double entendre; comic use of language (including the play on characters' names); puns; and breaking the dramatic illusion.
This is the website of the Actors of Dionysus, a theatre company which specialises in producing adaptations and translations of classical Greek drama, with a particular emphasis on tragedy. The site gives information about past, current and future dramatic productions, accompanied by details of cast lists, photographs and press reviews, with tour dates also appearing here. Although the site is not comprehensive, it acts as a useful starting point for anyone seeking specific information and images relating to the modern performance reception of particular ancient plays (this is the kind of detailed information which can be difficult to get hold of, although it is currently being collated on a much larger scale by the Archive of Performances of Greek and Roman Drama in Oxford). There is a list here too of the company's publications, which include translations, scripts and essay collections on individual plays. These can be ordered via the site. The Actors of Dionysus also run an educational outreach programme comprising workshops and special events, accompanied by supplementary educational material. Details of such events can be found on the website.
Designed to provide students with an introduction to ancient Greek drama and the theatres in which it was performed, the website "Ancient Greek Theater" comes from Reed College's Humanities Department. It features the following: a timeline of Greek drama, locating key events and plays (both comedies and tragedies) in their chronological context; a section on the origins of Greek drama, with extracts from the works of ancient authors (in English translation) on the subject (e.g. Aristotle, Herodotus, Plutarch, the Suda lexicon); an outline of the process of staging a play; a plan and description of a typical Greek theatre; and a summary of the basic structure of an ancient Greek play. There is also a series of links to searchable Greek texts and English translations of a series of Greek tragedies and comedies from the Perseus website. Finally, a bibliography of introductory reading on Greek drama in general and on the playwrights Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides and Aristophanes is also given.
Compiled by Timothy J. Moore of the Department of Classics, University of Texas at Austin, this ancient music bibliography is a themed online bibliography (which, at the time of reviewing, had last been updated in 2008) that lists books and papers, of relevance to the classics or music student, interested in the study of music from Ancient Greece or Rome. Specific sections cover various elements of music making, including: singing and speaking; the voice; rhythm; and musical instruments, such as strings, auloi/tibiae, extant pipes, auletai/tibicines, and kroupezai/scabellum. There are also sections on music on: the Greek and Roman stage; Livy VII.2, the origins of Roman theatre, and the performance of 'cantica'; Plautus and Terence; music in art; dance; music, education and ethics; the Carmina Convivalia; and Byzantine music. The majority of the works listed here are written in English, although there are several in German, French and Italian.
ARCHES Project : Antiquity Related Collections Harnessed for Educational Scenarios is an online introduction to this project which endeavours to enhance the use of electronic resources related to classics and theatre studies. The project is a collaboration between: the University of Warwick's School of Theatre Studies; Centre for Academic Practice; and IT Services eLab together with City College Coventry. It arose from the research work of Professor Richard Beacham and Dr Hugh Denard, and employs the University of Warwick's extensive collection of Greek- and Roman- related virtual reality resources. The website is essentially an introduction to the project, detailing its development and objectives. The intention is to make extensive electronic facilities available for the benefit of those in higher and further education. For example, two original photographic collections and a collection of Virtual Reality reconstructions of Roman domestic and theatre spaces will allow a productive approach to the interactions between the Roman theatre and Roman wall-paintings. Another plan is to develop ideas about performance spaces within the ancient theatre. The project will also cooperate with already established web resources, such as Didaskalia. The website also includes: the contact addresses of those involved; a detailed project plan; and relevant progress reports (requiring Word), as well as documents describing the required software systems.
This is the online presence of the Archive of Performances of Greek and Roman Drama (APGRD), an inter-disciplinary research project at the University of Oxford which is aimed at establishing the international history of the production and reception of classical plays from the Renaissance to the present day, and to trace all extant evidence for performance and re-performance of plays within antiquity. The purpose of the APGRD is both to serve as a repository of physical materials relating to the stage history of the works in performance (such as playbills, programmes, reviews, drawings, photographs and audio-visual recordings) and to compile a comprehensive production history of ancient drama on the modern stage (revivals and adaptations on stage and film, and in opera and dance). Users may register to search the online APGRD Database of more than 9,000 productions of Greek and Roman drama on the modern stage, plus bibliographical sources for them. Playwrights whose works feature are Euripides, Sophocles, Aeschylus, Aristophanes, Menander, Plautus, Terence, and Seneca. This site provides information about the project, its events (including seminars, conferences and colloquia) and publications, as well as links to further research resources and listings of current and forthcoming productions of ancient drama. Links to relevant online resources include those for the reception of ancient drama, Classics in general and theatre studies. Funding is received from the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC).
The Bryn Mawr Classical Review (BMCR) is a regularly-updated online journal which publishes reviews, written by academics, of books on a whole range of classical subjects (since 1990). The reviews are generally longer than one expects to find within a scholarly journal, often giving a chapter-by-chapter summary of the work as well as critical comment. BMCR also publishes responses to reviews (and occasionally responses to the responses). The website gives access to all reviews published since 1990 and a simple search interface. The website also includes instructions for viewing Greek characters online, as well as guidelines for reviewers. The reviews are relevant to both Classics and Classical archaeology and may be useful to bot researchers and students.
This is the website of the Centre for Ancient Drama and its Reception (CADRE), a research project based at the University of Nottingham's Classics Department. The project aims to further the study of ancient Greek and Roman tragedy and comedy and to look at its influence upon later traditions. Details of project members and collaborators are given here, as well as information on conferences held by the CADRE. The most informative section of the site is concerned with an ongoing project on Sophocles' fragmentary tragedies. Here brief synopses of selected fragments are given, along with some discussion by the editors. There is also a contents list for a forthcoming volume entitled 'Shards from Kolonos: Studies in Sophoclean Fragments'.
This well-organised website accompanies a course on classical drama and theatre run by Mark Damen of Utah State University. Although the material is designed for students on this particular course, there is much here which will be of interest to anyone studying or teaching these aspects of the ancient world. The site is divided into sections; within each section are several 'chapters', each of which corresponds to one week's teaching; the text of a lecture, along with some accompanying illustrations, is provided for each chapter. Section headings are as follows: the origins of western theatre (including chapters on theatre in the early Greek world and early Greek tragedy); classical Greek tragedy (with information on Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides); Greek comedy (covering satyr plays, Aristophanes and Menander); and Roman drama (dealing with the comedy of Plautus and Terence and the tragedy of the younger Seneca). Texts which are discussed are included in English translation (as 'readings') and are accompanied by questions for students to consider.
Classical Receptions in Drama and Poetry from c.1970-Present is a research project based within the Department of Classical Studies at the Open University (UK) and directed by Professor Lorna Hardwick; this is its online presence. The project aims to document and analyse the theatrical and literary interest in Greek texts and drama. This aim is accomplished through two broad aspects of the project. First, the project is publishing a series of case studies which examine relationships between the ancient texts and their corresponding modern creative art forms. Second, the project is developing a database of performances staged in the late twentieth century. Evidence is drawn from programmes, acting scripts, interviews and other texts. The Reception of Classical Texts database can be searched online after registration. A Poetry database is under development. The project publishes two peer-reviewed ejournals: New Voices and Practitioners' Voices, which are available from the website, as is the series of critical essays: 'Documenting and Researching Modern Productions of Greek Drama: The Sources'. The project has set up an electronic seminar series to enable informal contact and discussion among researchers working in the area, and these eseminars are archived and available on the project site (going back to 1998). The website also contains: information about the project and its methodology; a list of project publications; a specialist bibliography of material relating to modern productions of ancient Greek drama; and information about their Masks Workshop (2000). The project publishes listings of current and forthcoming productions in UK & Ireland and conferences, seminars and lectures, and the site makes avalable a list of links to related online resources.
The author of this online article is Marilyn Katz of Wesleyan University; according to the website the text found here is also to appear in print in the scholarly journal Classical Philology. The focus of the piece is the debate in modern times as to whether ancient Athenian women were present at theatrical performances. Katz looks at the origins of the debate which was first sparked in 1776 by the German scholar Karl Böttiger and which has occupied academics since then until the present day. Her focus is the 'socio-cultural and historical circumstances under which the question first arose as a subject of scholarly debate'. Further sections of the essay are as follows: Böttiger and the theatre; popular culture and classical scholarship; eighteenth-century German Hellenism; and the role and rights of women. This article on a very specific topic will be of interest to those seeking information on the history of classical scholarship in Europe as well as on the debate surrounding the presence of women in the ancient theatre.
'Didaskalia: Ancient Theatre Today' (ISSN 1321-4853) is an English-language Web resource that combines an online full-text journal with short introductory essays. There are also listings and links to ancient theatre resources online. The online journal, published sporadically since 1994, covers modern performances of Greek and Roman music, drama and dance. At September 2008 there are 21 issues available online. Each issue carries a mixture of features, performance and book reviews. Themes have included: Masks; Tantalus; Electra; crossing the ancient stage; Homeric epic; contemporary research trends and electronic initiatives in ancient theatre studies. Contributors to the journal have included scholars and theatre professionals. This is a useful resource for anyone interested in ancient theatre in general or in its modern performance and reception in particular.
"Grand" is a website about the Gallo-Roman Sanctuary site at Grand, located in the North-West of France in the Vosges Department, which was first excavated in the early 19th century, when the substantial amphitheatre attracted scholarly interests. Later excavations, during the late 19th and 20th centuries, helped uncover and record the amphitheatre, the sanctuary's ramparts and several large, very well-preserved mosaics. The sanctuary's lack of water supply, in a region where drought was common, was puzzling until the discovery of over 300 wells, connected by a 15km long complex of underground galleries for running water, sometimes at a depth of over 12 metres. The website provides a description of the archaeological site itself, rather than the separate excavations undertaken. Photographic images coupled with hand-drawn reconstructions provide support to the text.
Greek Theater and Society is an extensive online resource designed to accompany a course run by the Classics Department at Temple University. It is concerned with Greek drama and the society which produced it, and looks at both tragedy (Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides) and comedy (Aristophanes) in the fifth century BC. The site's main feature is a series of study guides and worksheets on specific plays. These include: Aeschylus' Prometheus Bound and Oresteia; Sophocles' Oedipus Tyrannos, Ajax, Electra, Philoctetes and Trachiniae; Euripides' Bacchae, Medea, Hecuba, Iphigenia at Tauris, Hippolytus and Heracles; and Aristophanes' Birds, Lysistrata and Frogs. The guides include plot summaries and highlight key themes of the plays. The website also has a glossary of key terms; information on characters from mythology; and a set of links to external sites offering bibliographies and background information on Greek drama (although note that several of the links to Perseus have not been updated in line with that website and are therefore broken).
"The History of the Theatre" by Oskar Brockett and Franklin Hildy traces the course of dramatic performance from its origins, through European theatre of the Middle Ages, to the dramas of Europe and America in the modern period. It also includes chapters on Asian and African theatre. This website is a companion to this important book, and has a twofold aim. Firstly, to provide updates to the text, and secondly to deploy new technology to develop new approaches to the study of the theatre. The website is of principal value for its list of links, organised chapter by chapter. These provide a much-needed and useful resource for a prospective student. Although not intended to be comprehensive, a wide range of websites are included, ranging from large academic projects, such as Perseus and the University of Virginia's Electronic Text Center to individual pages of scholars and tutors. The website accompanies the eighth edition and updates to the text are limited. However, the book is now in its ninth edition, and a companion website introduces the alterations (mainly the reorganisation of chapters) and has an appendix on the nature of theatre history that is omitted from the text.
This website provides a lecture-style illustrated introduction to ancient Greek and Roman comedy, an excellent overview (by Roger Dunkle of the Classics Department of Brooklyn College) of the subject for school and undergraduate level students of classics and related disciplines. The 29 sections introduce the origins of classical comedy and its role in the religious festivals of Athens, which were established in honour of the god Dionysius. It particularly relates to the Great (or City) Dionysia, one of the two Dionysian festivals (the other being the Rural Dionysia) that was probably established in the 6th century BC, but that is best documented from the 5th century BC onwards. The website outlines the form and function of the theatres and their technical equipment with reference to surviving literary, iconographic and archaeological evidence. There is much useful information on genre, aspects of performance, the role of actors and chorus, and on music, as well as a modest bibliography suitable for undergraduate reading. The text is hypertexted throughout to the Perseus digital library for convenient reference, which makes it an ideal online resource for students taking classical civilisation at an elementary level.
This online resource is a clearly-written and well-illustrated introduction to Greek tragedy aimed at undergraduates studying Classics and related subjects, by Roger Dunkle of the Classics Department of Brooklyn College, New York. Presented in lecture form, the course consists of 24 sections which include the following: an explanation of the origins of tragedy in the religious festivals of ancient Greece (particularly the City Dionysia in Athens); information about the locations of ancient theatres and an analysis of their architectural and technical details; a discussion of the written and iconographic sources for the Greek theatre; and sections on the actors, chorus, music and production of a play. The only drawback is the absence of a bibliography or of sources for the archaeological material such as the admirable series of painted vase scenes which reflect the origin of the text in the lecture hall. Nonetheless, the resource will benefit school and undergraduate students of ancient literature and society, as well as those interested in comparative literature and drama.
Designed for both students and teachers of Classics, this is the website for the Joint Association of Classical Teachers (JACT), an organisation which promotes the teaching and learning of classics in schools and universities. JACT provides an information service for classicists, offering details of forthcoming events, productions of Greek plays and JACT summer schools for intensive study in Greek and Latin. The website also features: details of how to join or contact JACT; a range of teaching resources for Latin, Greek, Classical Civilisation and Ancient History in schools; information for teachers (including examination syllabi, announcements of job vacancies, school trips related to Classics, and specialist book stores); details of JACT's journals, 'Omnibus' and 'Journal of Classics Teaching' (with sample articles available online); information on projects supported by JACT; links to other Classics-related websites. Also featured is 'The Good Text Guide', a searchable guide to recommended editions of ancient texts.
This is the website of an AHRC funded project which is imaging 3D ancient mask miniatures relating to the New Comedy of Menander and create full size reproductions. The aim is to explore the “innate dramatic properties of the ancient artefacts” and demonstrate their inherent theatrical qualities, giving a new insight into the way these qualities were exploited by ancient dramatists, combining “literary, dramatic and iconographic approaches to Greek New Comedy”. The website includes a short section of project news and publications, informative video clips exploring the project in more detail and a lists of technical standards the project has employed.
Modern Actors Staging Classics (MASC) is a Canadian theatre company which attempts to produce faithful reconstructions (in translation) of ancient Greek and Roman tragedy and comedy on the modern stage, and this is their website. It contains information on their production of plays by Euripides, Sophocles, Aristophanes and Plautus. The site will be of interest to those looking for information on the performance reception of classical drama. In particular, it provides an insight into some of the problems of staging ancient plays with which modern directors and performers must engage. Each production is detailed here with photographs and accompanying text which highlights many of the issues involved in producing classical theatre. Stage and set design, costumes, masks, use of actors and the relationship of the actors/characters with the audience are all touched upon here. The site also gives some suggestions for further reading on several of the plays, as well as links to online reviews of individual productions (found in the online journal Didaskalia).
The Theatre Database is an extensive resource for students of drama, covering drama from the classical world to the 21st century. There are seven principal sections, relating to ancient theatre, medieval theatre, and chronologically from the 16th to the 20th centuries. Within each section are a number of informative essays covering the significant aspects of the era. So, for the 16th century, there are pieces on Elizabethan Dramatic Criticism, a biography of Shakespeare and an analysis of John Heywood. These essays are taken from a range of previously published works, each of which is credited to its author. In addition, related links are appended to each study, as well as a direct link to the HighBeam search engine. The website is particularly strong in its resources on Ancient Theatre, and surprisingly brief on the 20th century; there is also, as yet, very little on the 21st century. It should be stressed that the individual essays are are old, generally dating to the early decades of the 20th century. Articles on the Ancient Theatre (this reviewer's primary field of knowledge) are not by classical specialists, and unlike Aristophanes, Greek tragedians are not given the same play-by-play treatment. Many of the links are to equally outdated articles on the Theatre History website. Even if these essays may be valid in outline, they are unsatisfactory in such a potentially useful resource. This criticism holds true for the other periods: the essay on Shakespeare is taken from Bellinger, M.F., "A Short History of the Drama" (New York, 1927). At most, this website is useful as a starting point, and the advertisements on the site are rather irritating. As an alternative, with a greater and more contemporary scope, interested users might try Franklin Hildy and Oscar Brockett's History of the Theatre website.
The website TheatreHistory.com features information about a wide range of theatrical traditions in Europe, North America and Asia. The site offers an index of topics relating to the theatre history of different cultures. There are resources on Irish theatre, British theatre, Russian theatre, Spanish theatre and many more. There is a good cross-section of information about contemporary theatre, as well as pages devoted to ancient Greek and Roman and medieval theatre. There is also general information about the origins and development of the theatre. Under each topic, users can access information on playwrights and dramatic practice. Topics include biographies of key figures in the history of drama, synopses of plays and contextual studies about relationships between drama and society. Links are well-annotated so that information is easy to locate. The site also offers an online script archive. This is not fully comprehensive but there is a variety of full-length plays, one-act plays, short plays and monologues. The archive would be helpful for drama teachers looking for performance pieces. The site has an excellent range of resources and would be of use to those studying almost any dramatic tradition.
This is the website of Thiasos, a London-based theatre company which aims to revive the performance of ancient Greek tragedy and comedy by using music, dance and spectacle, and in particular by emphasising the role of a singing and dancing Chorus. The company also aims to draw lessons from other world theatrical cultures and to apply these to its performance of Greek drama (for example by recasting Euripides' Hippolytus as an Indonesian-style dance drama). Their productions attempt to recreate ancient music and choreography using what scant evidence remains, and their website offers insights into this approach. This site will therefore be of particular use to those interested in the performance reception of classical drama. Details are given here of the plays which have been produced by Thiasos: Aeschyluls' Persians; Euripides' Hippolytus, Medea, and Bacchae; and Aristophanes' Wealth and Peace. The approach undertaken for each play is described, and the explanatory text is accompanied by production photographs as well as samples of music which can be downloaded by the user. The site also features the text of interviews with members of the company on particular aspects of performance: music, masks and the Chorus.