Drama, according to contemporary theatre histories, has its roots in ritual; in the sacrifices and celebrations held in the name of the ancient gods and in the music, dancing, chanting and singing of a communal act of worship. The doing or ‘drama’ of these acts can be seen as a profound expression of the respective culture. It has the potential to be both sacred and blasphemous. It may summon up forces that are both light and dark. It may be both idyll and nightmare. It may reassure or chill the blood. Western theatre then, as an organised form of entertainment held in specifically designed buildings, has grown from this — and some would say has been trying to get back to it ever since.
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