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latter, either a large crowd of citizens must be employed or the crowd must be off stage.
On a curtain stage, the entrance to the tent may be simply the opening between the back curtains folded back.
Elizabethan Stage. I, outer stage; II, foliage on the inner stage for Brutus' garden.
III, i, outer stage. A low step in front of the middle opening of the curtains may indicate the entrance to the Capitol, where Cæsar stands when he is assassinated. This step will not be conspicuous if it is put in place before the play begins and is left there throughout the play. A similar step immediately behind the middle opening of the curtains may serve for Antony to stand on for the oration, which he delivers on the inner stage, III, ii.
IV commences on the outer stage, the slightly parted curtains representing the door of Brutus' tent. At the words "Speak your griefs softly,” Brutus draws the curtains and the two generals go into the tent, leaving the other characters standing on the outer stage, though the inner stage is then open to the audience. However, the final episode in this act, represented by the lines printed in small type, should be played on the outer stage with the curtains closed.
V, full stage.
Music. Music especially written for the play is not easily obtainable, though selections from Handel's Julius Cæsar would be admirably suited.
BOTTOM Costumes. Grecian -- white or colored, but if colored, brightly colored.
Puck and the fairy may be dressed as conventional fairies, or Puck's costume may be made of a darker material, green or brown.
The costumes of the common men of Athens may be made of unbleached muslin or of lining, instead of cotton crepe.
In the last act, Wall wears a wide piece of white canvas or pasteboard hung on a string passing behind his neck.
Realistic Stage. I. The interior of a very primitive room, or the same as III.
II. An open space in a wood. The back drop curtain may be of dark blue cloth for the sky. The left two thirds of the stage may have a green floor covering to suggest grass. The right third should have shrubbery or trees on it in which Puck may hide to watch the rehearsal.
III. A high wall* may run across the stage, behind which may be seen Theseus' palace. *
IV. Drop picture of a hall* in Theseus' palace. At the right, back of the first entrance, should be a throne for two characters and seats for four others.
Lighting. The rehearsal in the second scene takes place in moonligat.
IV. Change lights from white to blue just before Thisbe returns to find Pyramus.
Simpler Stages. The wall for Scenes I and III may be constructed very simply out of compo board, with a few strengthening cleats at the back, and stand upon feet nailed at right angles to the back. For Scene II blue lights reflected upon the plain white wall or the curtains at the back of the stage will serve for sky though a blue cloth drop curtain with several cut-out trees of brown and different shades of green stitched on to it makes the best background. A single painted compo board or canvas tree may hide Puck from Quince's players, or Puck may take refuge in a shadow on the righthand side of the stage. Scene IV may be an outdoor scene, with the seat of state a bench draped with rich cloth. The other seats may be draped with Canton flannel or burlap.
Elizabethan Stage. I, outer stage; II, full stage, with foliage on inner stage for wood; III, outer stage; IV, full stage, with seats on the inner stage.
Music. Selection of vocal pieces for A Midsummer Night's Dream (Mendelssohn, edited by Dr. R. Dustan), W. Gray Co., $ .75 Book of songs (French). .
1.80 Sheet music, H. W. Gray Co.: Over hill, over dale - two-part song S. A., J. P. Attwater.... .12
“ S. A., C. H. Lloyd.
.15 Mendelssohn's incidental music...
THE TAMING OF THE SHREW
Costumes. Italian. Elizabethan may be substituted.
The scholar's costume put on by Lucentio is the academic cap and gown of the present time. Tranio may have been carrying
and gown in a bag, since his master came to Padua to attend the University. If Tranio wears no cloak in the beginning of the first episode, the transformation in his appearance when he assumes the large rich cloak of Lucentio will be more marked.
Realistic Stage. I. Baptista's house.* Arched way L. for the gate to Hortensio's house. The gate can be dispensed with, if the company prefers to let the audience think of it as hidden behind the left-hand tormentor wing.
II. A room* in Baptista's house.
III. A great bare room. The antique character of Petruchio's country house may be emphasized by putting two very shallow steps before the arched entrance way R.
IV. A brown floor covering may represent the roadway. The drop picture may be a forest.*
V. A fine room* in Baptista's house, with splendid furnishings, suggestive of wealth and munificence. Large, open doors or archways in both side walls. Steps may be placed at the open entrance (L.), and Tranio and Hortensio may stand on them to look into the
Vincentio, Petruchio, and Katharina also arrive at the same door and stand in the entrance way.
Elizabethan Stage. I, outer stage; II, inner stage; III commences on the outer stage, but just before Petruchio arrives with Katharina the curtains should be parted and the inner stage with its furniture included in the scene; IV, outer stage; V, inner stage.
The curtains may be closed for a moment between Episodes 3 and 4, 4 and 5, 6 and 7, and 9 and 10, to mark the lapse of time between them, since all of them take place on the inner stage.
It is interesting to note that in the complete play of The Taming of the Shrew there was considerable use of the balcony. The stage directions in the First Folio also indicate the appearance of one of the characters at a window undoubtedly one of those above the doors to the outer stage. See picture on page 358.
Lighting. The curtain need not go down between episodes which take place in the same setting if the lapse of time can be indicated by a change in the intensity or color of the lighting. This may really contribute to the unity of the playlet.
Music. No music is published for The Taming of the Shrew, except a song, "Should He Upbraid” (H. R. Bishop), in the Book of Twenty Shakespeare Songs [H. W. Gray Co., $1.25).
Costumes. Much simpler than the Elizabethan, but may be the same in general characteristics.
Most of the doubling outlined for the playlets either leaves the actor to play a second rôle which it will do no harm for the audience to confuse with the first, or a rôle in which the contrast may be made so great as to leave little chance for confusion.
Realistic Stage. A hall * in the king's castle is the basic scene of the playlet. In II, ii and V a throne may be set up L.
I, i and iii. Rugged scenery, with sea in the distance.* However, the stage should be so dark that the scene will hardly be observed.
III, i. The queen's study.*
Lighting. The dramatic effect will be heightened if II, ii is only dimly lighted, except for a spot upon the "players" and a reflection on the king's face. After the king has rushed away, Hamlet and Horatio may step into the better lighted space that the actors occupied a moment before.
Stage Movements. The entrances and stage business have been contrived so that R. is indicative of possessing the upper hand or advantage. Thus the ghost makes his ominous entrance R. Hamlet, after his communication with the ghost, exits R. R. becomes the symbol of his motive. He puts on the play with entrances from the R., and Horatio comes to him from that side. However, when through the killing of Polonius, Hamlet loses the upper hand, he disconsolately makes his exit L. In the last act he makes his appearance R., and though Laertes wounds him when for an instant Laertes gets the R., Hamlet carries out his purpose and dies upon the R. The false King's throne was upon the L., a dumb prophecy that it will fall. Instances of like symbolic stage movement in this playlet can be recognized by reference to the very short summary in the notes on Preparations for Presenting the Plays.
Elizabethan Stage. I, i, inner stage; ii, outer stage; iii, inner stage. In Shakespeare's time the ghost probably disappeared through a trap door in the floor, since in the complete play after his exit his voice reaches Hamlet from “under the stage.”
II, i, outer stage; ii, Hamlet's instructions to the players are given on the inner stage, then the curtains are closed until the beginning of the mimic play, which is acted upon the inner stage with the spectators on the outer stage.
III, i commences with outer stage. Hamlet, however, in drawing the curtain to discover that he has killed Polonius, reveals a section of the inner stage upon which the ghost afterwards appears. It is possible, however, that in Shakespeare's theatre the inner stage was revealed upon Hamlet's entrance and that Polonius hid behind an arras hung before some smaller section of the stage. ii, outer stage.
IV, inner stage; V, commences on the outer stage, but the curtains open at the entrance of the King and Queen, so that the remainder of the act takes place upon the full stage.
Simpler Stages. Appropriate changes of the lighting for different scenes will sufficiently mark off and characterize the steps in the progress of the playlet. The simple curtain st needs no modification for any of the scenes.
On a bare platform stage with simple cheesecloth hangings on only the rear wall, a simple device for securing the effect of distance and mystery will be especally appreciated. This effect may be secured by hanging a curtain of gray cheesecloth about two feet in front of the hangings at the back of the stage and training two search lights upon it from the sides of the stage, one light dimmed far more than the other. The ghost, making his appearance behind the dimly lighted section of the curtain, seems to be coming from a great distance, and even when he stands behind the brilliantly lighted section, seems to be surrounded by an atmosphere of shadowy mystery.
Music. Songs 'or Hamlet may be had from French.for $ 48.