Objective: In Act 1, Part 1, the structure, story and characters of Barber of Seville (first performed in 1775) were inspired at least partly by the commedia dell'arte, a type of theatre that first appeared in Italy late in the 1600s. This type of drama spread throughout Europe and dominated theatre throughout the continent for several years. This lesson will discuss this type of theatre.
1) Class Discussion: Describe this first part of Act 1.
Small Group Activity: By what is the structure, story, and characters of "Barber of Seville" partly inspired? What is the history of this type of theatre? Describe its popularity throughout Europe.
Class Discussion: Share the small groups' responses regarding the inspiration of this story and its characters, as well as historical information about the commedia dell'arte. What are your thoughts on this type of drama? Is it entertaining? Does it teach a lesson? What is its purpose...
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