Date of Award


Document Type



Theatre Arts

First Reader

Professor Drew Hampton

Second Reader

Dr. Johnny Wink

Third Reader

Dr. Myra Houser


The proposition that the Elizabethan theatre space, with its lack of a "fourth wall" the delivery of Shakespeare's works is nothing new. From a technical standpoint, scholars have also suggested that analysis of the spoken text implies stage directions for both actors and technicians. These approaches are still used by directors at the New Globe in London, England, and are a heavily emphasized point in the curriculum of the Globe Association. Actors are encouraged to embrace the intimate proximity of the audience and the configuration of the balconies as a major influence in their delivery of the text.

There still seems to be a divide, however, between the approach in a Globe-like space (of which there is currently only one in existence), and that of Shakespearean delivery in any other theatrical context. The simple fact is that Shakespeare did not only write for specific audiences, but for specific spaces - some for the Elizabethan stage of the Globe, some for Jacobean spaces such as Blackfriars. These spaces intimately affected the word choices that the Bard made in order to most effectively communicate story, character, attitude, technical cues, and even blocking in a time when stage directions were scarce and actors did not employ the type of extensive rehearsal schedule with which modem actors are now familiar.

Therefore, this thesis will endeavor to prove that analysis of Shakespearean text in its original physical context reveals intentional, vital information that is otherwise lost in translation, therefore making it a necessary approach for the modern thespian.



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