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Stage and Screen Education and Inspiration The American Identity

STAGE AND SCREEN

 

Shakespeare on the Early American Stage

Shakespeare on the Early American Stage

To a modern American, Shakespeare in the early American theater would seem both familiar and, in some ways, very strange. Audiences didn’t hesitate to voice (or shout) their opinions, differences over acting styles could lead to violence, and Shakespeare routinely shared the evening with farces and musical numbers. Comments from theater historians Heather S. Nathans and James Cook offer a guided tour of this different, yet very American theater scene.

 Shakespeare in colonial and revolutionary times

Heather S. Nathans
Associate professor of theater, University of Maryland

Popular interest in Shakespeare

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Shakespeare onstage before 1850

James Cook
Associate professor of history and American culture, University of Michigan

A night at the theater

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Religious reactions to theater

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Who wasn’t in the audience

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Boston’s working-class Haymarket Theatre

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Rowdy times and mixed classes

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Action-packed Shakespeare and active audiences

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Shakespeare then and sports today

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