Thursday, October 28, 2004

Melodrama

Melodrama is one of the ‘Main Dramatic Territories’ studied at the school of
Jacques Lecoq. Melodrama deals with timeless themes and emotions: good and
evil, life and death, loss, sacrifice, betrayal, love, etc… In melodrama
there is always ‘the return’ and ‘the departure’ either with people,
emotions or places. Examples are the plays of Romeo and Juliet, and King
Lear, and the books/films Doctor Zhivago, The English Patient and Gone With
The Wind to name but a few. The aim of melodrama is to bring the audience to
a catharsis brought on by these ‘grand emotions.’ A common misconception is
that melodrama is over the top, and hammy, but then it would be commedia
dell’arte or bouffons (two other dramatic territories at the school of
Lecoq). It is about showing a ‘conviction’ with sincerity and allowing the
audience to share in that conviction.

- Emma

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