Article

The Most Convenient Place: The Second Blackfriars Theater and its Appeal

Ralph Alan Cohen

in The Oxford Handbook of Early Modern Theatre

Published in print October 2011 | ISBN: 9780199697861
Published online September 2012 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780199697861.013.0013

Series: Oxford Handbooks of Literature

 The Most Convenient Place: The Second Blackfriars Theater and its Appeal

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  • Literary Studies (1500 to 1800)
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The Globe is an icon of English dramatic and literary history and one of the most famous buildings in the world. The Blackfriars playhouse, the first purpose-built (or refitted) indoor theatre in the English-speaking world and the most profitable early modern theatre during England's biggest boom in playmaking, is neither an icon nor at all well known. The reason for this disproportion in public awareness is partly the romance of the open-air theatres, partly the greater number of William Shakespeare's plays first staged at the Globe, and partly the relative number of images we have of each of the theatres. The evidence from the plays themselves and from eyewitness accounts suggests a greater degree of difference between the two experiences. This article looks at the place, at performance in the place, and at the audience with an eye to what may be theatrically remarkable about that mix at the second Blackfriars.

Keywords: Globe; Blackfriars; England; theatre; William Shakespeare; plays; audience; performance

Article.  8282 words. 

Subjects: Literature ; Literary Studies (1500 to 1800) ; Literary Studies (Plays and Playwrights)

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