The 19th century Early 19th-century literature After the American Revolutionand increasingly after the War ofAmerican writers were exhorted to produce a literature that was truly native. As if in response, four authors of very respectable stature appeared.
It was a time of tremendous growth in population in America, especially in cities on the East Coast. Americans had more leisure time and better standards of living, and they looked to the theater to provide entertainment -- laughter, glitter, and sentimentality.
The expanding transportation system in the United States allowed actors and actresses to tour the country, bringing professional theater to many towns and cities that had never before experienced it. As the population of the country grew rapidly, the number of theaters in large and mid-size cities grew as well.
From the s until the turn of the century, thousands of new theaters were built. The election of Andrew Jackson as President of the United States fueled the spirit of nationalism that had been growing in the country. Hallmarks of the nationalistic movement were patriotism, optimism, and idealism, and these values were reflected in the American theater.
Romanticism, the dominant aesthetic mode in writing and the arts in Europe, was embraced in America theater as well but was blended with nationalistic overtones, producing more democratic and populist themes. Another aspect of the prosperity of this era was the growth of businesses serving the theater industry.
Especially in New York City, there was tremendous growth of businesses such as dramatic agencies, costume shops, theater suppliers, photography studios, trade newspapers, boarding houses and hotels, and restaurants catering to the theater trade.
Theaters of the 19th Century Theater design and technology changed as well around the midth century. Candlelit stages were replaced with gaslight and limelight. Limelight consisted of a block of lime heated to incandescence by means of an oxyhydrogen flame torch. The light could then be focused with mirrors and produced a quite powerful light.
Theater interiors began improving in the s, with ornate decoration and stall seating replacing the pit. InLaura Keen opened the remodeled Chestnut Street Theater in Philadelphia, and newspaper accounts describe the comfortable seats, convenient boxes, lovely decorations and hangings, excellent visibility, good ventilation, and baskets of flowers and hanging plants.
Theater crowds in the first half of the 19th century had gained a reputation as unruly, loud and uncouth. The improvements made to theaters in the last half of the 19th century encouraged middle- and upper class patrons to attend plays, and crowds became quieter, more genteel, and less prone to cause disruptions of the performance.
Plays and Other Entertainments in the 19th Century Theater Fanny Brown in costume with American flag Well into the midth century, American theaters continued to be strongly influenced by London theater.
Many actors and actresses of this period were born and got their professional start in England. However, American-born playwrights and actors began to have an influence, and contemporary plays began to be performed regularly as well.
Prior to the s, a theater bill might include five or six hours of various entertainments, such as farces, a mainpiece, an afterpiece, musical entertainment, and ballet.
Music was an important component of early American theater, and plays were often adapted to included musical numbers.
In the s, the number of entertainments on a theater bill began to be reduced, first to two or three and, later, to one main feature only. Acting styles in the early 19th century were prone to exaggerated movement, gestures, grandiose effects, spectacular drama, physical comedy and gags and outlandish costumes.
However, from the midth century, a more naturalistic acting style came into vogue, and actors were expected to present a more coherent expression of character. Subject matter of new plays was more often drawn from contemporary social life, such as marriage and domestic issues and issues of social class and social problems.
Another favorite form in 19th-century theater was the burlesque also called travesty. The plays of Shakespeare, especially those in the regular repertory of the legitimate theaters, were a favorite target.
Many actors were known primarily for their comedic and burlesque acting talents. Stock theater companies were established in large cities on the East Coast and in New Orleans.
The cast was then supplemented by visiting theatrical stars, who toured the country for just such purpose. Stock companies were self-sufficient and mounted productions on their own when no star was visiting, but by the s, so many stars were touring the United States that most companies were rarely without the services of at least one big-name actor or actress.
Stock companies usually had an actor-manager who was responsible for all details of business and production. Managers of these companies were quite powerful and their word was law in the company. Even then, the Copyright Act only covered printed plays. Theatrical productions were rotated regularly, often daily.
However, long runs of or more continuous performances were not unusual and became common in the latter decades of the 19th century. In the last half of the 19th century, the star system gradually gave way to the "combination system. Companies would spend the summer in their home city, usually New York, Boston, or Philadelphia, and then would be on tour again beginning in October.
A "season" usually consisted of 39 weeks.While we often imagine that the twentieth century was the era in which the greatest advances in technology and science occurred, many often overlook the remarkable advances that came out of the preceding century?advances which in themselves were equally as astonishing in their era as those of the twentieth century were for us.
- 20th century is a significant era for not only the changes in individual values, but also for the dynamics of the many societies around the world (Fuller ).
20th century changed how human kind perceived themselves and the world they are living in (ibid). Late Nineteenth Century Changes in Science and Thought. Urbanization and the Industrial Revolution which gave rise to it contributed to two major changes in thinking during the late nineteenth century.
American literature - The 20th century: Important movements in drama, poetry, fiction, and criticism took shape in the years before, during, and after World War I.
The eventful period that followed the war left its imprint upon books of all kinds.
English Literature Two of the very most successful poets of the 19th century, specifically between and , were Elizabeth Barrett Browning and.
The “Banana Leaf” fabric has a profound impression on the early 20th century American interior. This magnum opus of Rose Cumming helped to pioneer the interior design as a profession.
This new style changed the interior design industry in s.