Monográfico_Cervantes Monográfico Cervantes-Shakespeare - Page 61

Elizabethan theatre (also known as English Renaissance theatre or early modern English theatre) refers to drama written during the period between the Reformation and the closure of English theatres in 1642. The theatres were shut down in 1642 (until the restoration of the monarchy in 1660), due to the outbreak of the English Civil War between the Royalists and the Parliamentarians. The Puritans exerted their in4luence on Parliament to ban what they considered to be a vulgar form of entertainment. Although the theatre of this golden period is most commonly referred to as Elizabethan theatre, there were in fact three different monarchs who reigned during its timeframe; Queen Elizabeth I, who reigned from 1558-1603; King James I, whose rule spanned from 1603-1625; and 4inally King Charles I, who held the crown from 1625-1642. The 4irst theatre built that resembled the theatre as we know it today was called “the Theatre”, and was built in Shoreditch in 1576. Earlier on in the sixteenth century, those who wanted to put on plays didn’t have a dedicated building to do so. They performed in the courtyard of inns or in the houses of noblemen. Initially the City of London authorities were opposed to public performances, but Queen Elizabeth’s enthusiasm for plays led to more and more theatres popping up in the suburbs. Before the eventual victory of the disapproving authorities in 1642, Elizabeth’s patronage fostered a period of intense activity and dynamism whose legacy we still enjoy today in the work of playwrights such as William Shakespeare. The theatres welcomed spectators from every social class. The only exception was in the case of royals, for whom the plays were performed privately, at court. However, under Elizabeth’s reign, the plays that were staged at court were the same ones attended by those visiting the public playhouses. The poorest spectators were being entertained with the same stories as the nobility, just in a different location. \X[\Y˘ B*B