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    A survey of international theatre from Ancient Theatre to Contemporary Performance. The conceptual, critical understanding of plays, productions, and the formal characteristics of different types of performance.

    This paper introduces students to some of the most important movements, authors and styles of theatre from ancient times through to contemporary performance. We look at not just the content of works - what is said in them - but also form - how it is said. THEA 221 is a core second-year paper in Theatre Studies at the University of Otago.

    About this paper

    Paper title Theatre: Ancient to Contemporary
    Subject Theatre Studies
    EFTS 0.15
    Points 18 points
    Teaching period Semester 1 (On campus)
    Domestic Tuition Fees ( NZD ) $981.75
    International Tuition Fees Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.
    THEA 122
    Schedule C
    Arts and Music

    Teaching staff

    Paper Co-ordinator: Ryan Hartigan and Professor Stuart Young

    Paper Structure

    This subject is largely taught through lectures and seminars.

    Further information on teaching arrangements is given in the course outline, which is updated annually.

    Teaching Arrangements

    Assessment is a combination of critical writing and oral presentations, with the options of a) performances of scenes and b) re-imagining and rewriting of classic texts.

    Further information on assessments is given in the course outline, which is updated annually on the basis of student feedback and other changes.


    Required Texts:

    • Beckett, Samuel, Waiting for Godot (Grove)
    • Bertolt, Mother Courage and Her Children, trans. Kushner (Methuen)
    • Chekhov, Anton, tbc
    • Euripides, The Bacchae in The Bacchae and Other Plays, trans. Davie (Penguin)
    • Ibsen, Henrik, Hedda Gabler in Plays Two, trans. Meyer (Methuen)
    • Kane, Sarah, Crave (Methuen)

    Other texts may be prescribed, including supplementary texts for group projects.

    Course outline

    Please contact the School of Performing Arts for a copy of the most recent paper profile.

    Graduate Attributes Emphasised
    Global perspective, Interdisciplinary perspective, Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking, Information literacy, Research, Self-motivation.
    View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
    Learning Outcomes

    Students who successfully complete the paper will gain basic literacy in key theatrical authors, styles, forms, and terms, as well as skills in research, essay writing and communicating knowledge and ideas.


    Semester 1

    Teaching method
    This paper is taught On Campus
    Learning management system


    Stream Days Times Weeks
    A1 Tuesday 10:00-11:50 9-13, 15-22
    Thursday 10:00-11:50 9-13, 15-16, 18-22
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