The chorus in Greek tragedy is defined as a group of people who often participate in and comment on the dramatic action, emphasising traditional moral and social attitudes and providing commentary (Moohan, 2008). In Greek theatre they also provided a more practical role, entertaining the audience during the play with songs and dance and allowing the performers to change. Most performers performed two or more roles known as doubling. In The Burial at Thebes the director, John Theocharis (2009), states that the chorus also adds dramatic tension and suspense whilst creating subjective and objective voices that underpin the context of the play.
In looking at the contribution that the chorus makes this essay will look at the various functions of the chorus - their role as a commentator, participating in and commenting on the dramatic action and how they present traditional moral and soci...
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...ture of the play, mainly based on the Greek, outlines these values in poetical format in the Choral Odes. The chorus’ commentary on the characters and drama and its subsequent participation pushes the plot towards traditional ideas with the encapsulation in their ending summation.
Hardwick, L. (2008), ‘Seamus Heaney’s The Burial at Thebes’, in Brown, R (ed.), Cultural Encounters (AA100 Book3), Milton Keynes, The Open University, pp.192-235
Heaney, S. (2004), The Burial at Thebes, London, Faber and Faber Ltd
Heaney, S. (2009), CDA5937 The Burial at Thebes – Interviews (AA100 Audio CD), Milton Keynes, The Open University
Moohan, E (2008), ‘Glossary’, in Moohan E (ed.), Reputations (AA100 Book1), The Open University, pp.231-238
Theocharis, J (2009), CDA5937 The Burial at Thebes – Interviews (AA100 Audio CD), Milton Keynes, The Open University
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