Show as an introduction to Greek history and culture or in combination with reading a Greek play.
Compare and contrast the Greek city/state political system to the American democratic system.
Investigate how ancient Greece was impacted by geography. Examine Greece’s elevation zones, precipitation and average temperatures. How did these factors influence daily life, warfare, and trade in ancient Greece?
Use in combination with the video segment of the scene from Oedipus the King. Discuss how the reader’s theater production of the scene from Oedipus the King is in keeping with the characteristics of Greeks theater.
Combine humanities and history in a unit on Ancient Greece that culminates in the performance of a Greek play and a Greek festival including original works (art, music, poetry, etc.) by students in the style of the Ancient Greeks.
Research the city of Thebes, Greece. Describe its status in ancient Greece as a prominent city-state, consider political, geographical and social characteristics. What is its role in Greek mythology?
Theater today owes much to Greek drama, which originated some 27 centuries ago in seventh century BCE. The Greeks were fascinated with the mystery of where and how the art form developed, with Aristotle and other writers proposing various theories. According to one legend, late in the sixth century BCE, Thespis first had the idea of adding a speaking actor to the performances of choral song and dance, which occurred on many occasions throughout Greece (hence the term “thespian” for actor).
Greek plays were performed in outdoor theaters. Early Greek theaters were probably little more than open areas in city centers or next to hillsides where the audience could stand or sit to watch the chorus singing about the exploits of a god or hero. From the late sixth century BCE to the fourth and third centuries BCE, there was a gradual evolution toward more elaborate theater structures, but the basic layout of the Greek theater remained the same.
Greek comedy and tragedy flourished in the fifth and fourth centuries BCE, when they were performed, sometimes before audiences of 12,000 or more, at religious festivals in honor of Dionysus, the god of wine and patron of theater. Unless they were later revived, these plays were performed only once and in competition with other plays.
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