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Early Cambridge Theatres : College, University and Town Stages, 1464-1720 - Alan H. Nelson

Early Cambridge Theatres

College, University and Town Stages, 1464-1720

Hardcover Published: 30th September 1994
ISBN: 9780521431774
Number Of Pages: 194

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The excavations of the Rose and the Globe theatres have created a new context for the study and reconstruction of the English Renaissance theatre. This book engages with this debate by attempting a reconstruction of early Cambridge theatres in the context of the professional theatres of Renaissance London. Cambridge provides a rich source of material: most of the college halls and chapels in which scaffold-theatres were constructed still stand, while records of the Cambridge theatres and the plays performed in them survive in abundance. The book includes a full survey of some dozen Cambridge colleges, the university's commencement stage, and extra-mural theatrical sites used by travelling professional companies, which lead to useful comparisons with the theatres of London. The author concludes with a plea for greater attention to documentary evidence in reconstructing the English Renaissance theatre.

"This beautifully illustrated book provides a fascinating and richly detailed examination of the documentary, archaeological, and architectural evidence for early Cambridge performance sites, together with a judicious assessment of what such information can tell us about the design of commercial playhouses in Renassance London." The Early Drama, Art, and Music Review "...offers an additional challenge to London's centrality in our understanding of Elizabethan theater...[The book] is a meticulous account of how plays were performed in Cambridge's colleges and inns. The advantages Nelson has over those who draw conclusions based in their necessarily limited knowledge of the Rose, Globe or Fortune amphitheaters is that the playing places he examines are still standing, and the records for their construction and outfitting are still extant." SEL "Nelson's views on the subject have much to recommend them...There is a great deal to be admired in Nelson's book. He rethinks the entire subject and offers much solid evidence to alter many of our currently held notions about theater design and performance...specialists will welcome this book both as a helpful guide through the mass of primary material in Cambridge repositories as well as for Nelson's provocative reassessment of the subject." Albion "...this mainly masterful expansion of the REED editorial apparatus offers the history of both early-modern theater architecture and performance." T. A. Pallen, Choice

List of illustrations
List of abbreviations
Note on sources
Introduction: London to Cambridge
Queens' College
Trinity College from 1605
Other colleges
The university commencement stage, 1464-1720
Secular playing sites
Cambridge staging practices
Postscript: Cambridge to London
Select Bibliography
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521431774
ISBN-10: 0521431778
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 194
Published: 30th September 1994
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 25.2 x 18.03  x 1.73
Weight (kg): 0.53