Performances at Court in the Age of Shakespeare

Publié le 8 juillet 2021 Mis à jour le 11 juillet 2021

Sophie Chiari et John Mucciolo (Eds.)


Even though Shakespeare openly dramatizes aristocratic shows in his own plays, the circumstances of early modern performance at court have received relatively little critical attention. With so much written on the playwright’s wide and multi-layered audiences, the entertainment of the court itself has too long been dismissed as a secondary issue. This book aims to shed fresh light on the multiple aspects of Shakespearean performances at the Elizabethan and early Stuart courts, considering all forms of drama, music, dance and other entertainment. Taking the specific scenic environment and material conditions of early modern performance into account, the chapters examine both real and dramatized court shows in order to break ground for new avenues of thought. The volume considers how early modern court shows shaped dramatic writing and what they tell us of the aesthetics and politics of the Tudor and Stuart regimes.

  • Introduces and analyses specific dimensions of performances at court in the early modern period, including music, dance, architecture, painted cloths and shows within.
  • Offers recent and innovative research on aristocratic entertainment in Shakespeare’s time from literary, historical, cultural and political perspectives.
  • Features chapters on Shakespeare’s predecessors as well as his contemporaries, with a special focus on Ben Jonson.

Les auteurs

Sophie Chiari is Professor of Early Modern Studies at Clermont Auvergne University, France. She is the author of several monographs on Elizabethan drama, including Shakespeare’s Representation of Weather, Climate, and Environment:The Early Modern ’Fated Sky’ (2018).

John Mucciolo is an Independent Scholar and founding editor, with W. R. Elton, of The Shakespearean International Yearbook. He is particularly interested in Shakespeare’s late plays and early modern political, intellectual and theatrical backgrounds.


General introduction
Sophie Chiari and John Mucciolo

Part I. Elizabethan Court Theatre :

1. Palamon and Arcite : early Elizabethan court theatre
Richard Dutton
2. Revels at the court of Elizabeth I, 1594–1603
W. R. Streitberger
3. Multiple Marlowe : Doctor Faustus and court performance
Roy Eriksen
4. The court theatre response to the public theatre debate in A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Janna Segal

Part II. The Jacobean Tradition :

5. Masculine dreams : Henry V and the Jacobean politics of court performance
Murat Öğütcü
6. Jacobean royal premieres ? Othello and Measure for Measure at Whitehall in 1604
Jason Lawrence
7. Pericles : a performance, a letter (1619)
David M. Bergeron
8. ’The old name is fresh about me’ : architectural mimesis and court spaces in All is True
Catherine Clifford

Part III. Reassessing the Stuart Masque :

9. Dancing at court : ’the art that all arts doe approve’
Anne Daye
10. The Tempest and the Jonsonian masque
Martin Butler
11. Noble masquing at the Stuart court
Leeds Barroll
12. ’Animated porcelain of the court’ : Stuart masquers as magical automata
Agnieszka Żukowska

Part IV. The Material Conditions of Performances at Court :

13. How did they do it ? Problems of staging plays at court
William B. Long
14. The Jacobean banqueting house as a performance space
John H. Astington
15. Musicians at court
Chantal Schütz
16. Painted cloths and the making of Whitehall’s playing space 1611–12
Rebecca Olson


Plus d’informations

Parution le 24 octobre 2019 chez Cambridge University Press.
Cliquez ici pour voir le site de l’éditeur.