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Arts Toolkit

Arts Toolkit: Drama Video Clips

History of Theater



KET Distance Learning instructor Liz Jewell discusses the history of the theater from ancient Greece to the 20th century. She covers the Greek development of the stage, the Roman contribution of pantomime, the processionals of the Middle Ages, commedia dell’arte, Shakespeare, 17th-century French comedy, and the contributions of Henrik Ibsen and Anton Chekhov to the modernization of theater. This excerpt is from the Theater Basics section of the KET Distance Learning series Humanities Connections. This series for teachers and students in grades 7-12 explores the basics of dance, theater, music, and the visual arts. Each of the sections includes two teacher broadcasts for background and two student broadcasts for use in class. The 16 segments are numbered consecutively, but any of the “Basics” programs may be a starting place.

Suggested Uses:

  • Use as an overview to begin a theater unit.
  • Use portions as appropriate in conjunction with the study of specific plays.
  • Combine the section on commedia dell’arte with the Pinocchio segment to explore/analyze this genre.
  • Use to compare/contrast various types of theater or periods in theater history.

For more information:

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