Losing the Plot: Audiences, Scraps of Performance, and Selective Participation

Further to Andy’s post on story, this post asks questions about the nature and necessity of coherent “story”—and of audiences following “plot”—in early modern commercial dramatic performance. It does so by putting literary and archival material into conversation with archaeological discoveries, and as such I'm thankful to Heather Knight of MOLA (Museum of London Archaeology) … Continue reading Losing the Plot: Audiences, Scraps of Performance, and Selective Participation

Performing words #6: matter

what’s the matter? This post follows up some of the points raised by Andy in his discussion of “story” and early modern theatre as part of his Performing Words series. Here, I suggest that the term “matter” might afford a more historically nuanced—and appropriate—vocabulary for thinking about the intersection of “story,” words, and performance. the … Continue reading Performing words #6: matter

Go dare; or, how scholarship lost the plot

Warning: contains plot spoilers 'Nothing happens, nobody comes, nobody goes, it's awful'. These lines were not written to describe the plays of John Lyly, but they would make an effective advertising slogan based on the scholarly consensus on his work. Michael Best was the first to identify the playwright's work as 'Lyly's static drama', an … Continue reading Go dare; or, how scholarship lost the plot