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Word Count: 985
The Italian Renaissance occurred from 1550 - 1700 The rapid economic growth in Italy during this time made it possible for the more wealthy citizens to endulge in alternate forms of entertainment Wealthy families such as the Medicis began a system of patronage in which they would finance artists to produce art in many forms Italian theatre used the plays of ancient Greek and Roman theatre dramas as well as mediaeval theatre religious plays as a foundation Commedia dellArte The main style used by theatre groups in Italy during this period was called commedia or Commedia dellArte Commedia dellArte or the comedy of professional artists was a mainstay in Italian theatre during its renaissance This included bits of comedy performed by different actors called lazzi The type of comedy used in the Italian Renaissance was what is now known as slapstick or farce This was a comedy style which highlighted pain or misfortune occurring to the actors in a humorous context For the most part the actors in these comedies used no scripts The actors were given a plot or scenario and acted out these plots in a humorous way These performances were often vulgar and obscene Standardize characters developed and appeared in familiar costumes and wearing masks The character standards for Commedia included these general outlines - Pantalone A greedy old man merchant or fool often lustful conniving and meddling - Dottore A drunk often proffesor or doctor dressed in a cap and gown - Capitano A soldier who was braggadocios and cowardly - Inamorati Young lovers who appeared quite normal compared to the rest of the characters - zanni Foolish servants Usually two servants one being drunk and more foolish than his cohort Neoclassicism Neoclassicists were rigid critics of Italian drama They developed rules for theatre performances that survived for nearly 200 years in Europe These mandates were claimed to have
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