A HISTORYof GREAT PLAYWRIGHTS
PRODUCT INFORMATION From the beginnings of western democracy in ancient Greece, plays have been a part of the human experience, helping us understand ourselves and make sense of the world. This five part series, A History of Great Playwrights, hosted by William Ambrose, founder of Ambrose Video Publishing, focuses on the rich literary tradition of the theater – its plays and playwrights, including such greats as Sophocles, Terence, William Shakespeare, Molière, Henrik Ibsen, Eugene O’Neill, Bertolt Brecht, Tennessee Williams, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tom Stoppard. With their unique perspective of the world around them, these playwrights have added depth and meaning to the world’s great body of literature.
Program 1: Antiquity to the Renaissance Program one examines the origins of plays and the earliest playwrights from ancient Greece to the Elizabethan Age.
456 BC - Sophocles and the Greek Playwrights 191 BC - Titus Maccius Plautus and the Roman Theater 1587 - Christopher Marlowe Writes Tamburlaine the Great 1594 - Shakespeare Pens Romeo and Juliet
Program 2: The Theater Responds to Industrialization Program two investigates how playwrights all over Europe reacted to social change in the Age of Industrialization.
1598 - Ben Jonson Establishes a New Kind of Comedy 1662 - Molière’s The School for Wives Premieres in Paris 1867 - Henrik Ibsen Revitalizes the Theater with Peer Gynt 1888 - August Strindberg, Father of Naturalistic Drama 1895 - Oscar Wilde’s Masterpiece, The Importance of Being Earnest
Shot in High Definition
5 programs on 2 DVDs
Runtime: 145 minutes
Program 3: The Theater Turns Inward As the Age of Industrialization reached its zenith in Europe and America, playwrights responded by delving into the depths of the human mind. Program three shows how European and American playwrights turned to psychology for inspiration.
1897 - Edmond Rostand Writes Cyrano de Bergerac 1904 - Anton Chekov's Last Play, The Cherry Orchard, Premieres in Moscow 1913 - George Bernard Shaw’s Pygmalion 1920 - John Galsworthy’s The Skin Game is Performed 1920 - Eugene O’Neill Wins First Pulitzer Prize 1923 - Sean O'Casey Begins the Dublin Trilogy
Program 4: The Theater Responds to Modernism This program examines how the epicenter of the theater and playwriting shifted to the United States, and how the musical became a major part of the theater.
1928 - Brecht’s The Threepenny Opera is Performed 1938 - Thornton Wilder Writes Our Town 1948 - Tennessee Williams Wins His First Pulitzer Prize for A Street Car Named Desire 1949 - Arthur Miller Produces Death of a Salesman 1949 - The Musical Comes of Age
Program 5: The Great Resurgence of the Theater At the end of the 20th Century and the beginning of the 21st, change engulfed the world from social issues to the transmission of information. In Program five we’ll see how playwrights dealt with the psychological and social changes of the era.
1953 - Samuel Beckett’s Waiting for Godot Premieres 1954 - Brendan Behan’s The Quare Fellow Premieres in Dublin 1959 - Eugène Ionesco's ‘Theater of the Absurd’
For more information visit AmbroseVideo.com or call (800)526-4663