5th Century BC Greek Theatre

The period between the fourth fifth and the fourth century BC was a period of tremendous growth for Greek Theatre. The period between the fourth and the fifth centuries BC is also referred to as the Golden Age of Athens. This is because Athens served as the center for most activities like culture, politics and military. These became the most common themes in the artworks produced around that time. Around the fifth century BC, the Athens was made the central place where the festival Dionysis was held. The festival of the Dionysis was to honor Dionysus god. This led to further growth of theatre and works of art in Greece. The three genres that were most common were the comedy, satyr play and tragedy. During the festivals, three play writers that were well known then would battle out. They would write pieces of art that would compete in the festivals. With time, Athens started exporting the theatre and this festival to its colonies. Athens wanted to create some culture common in all its colonies that it would be identifying with.

The Classical Period

During the fourth century BC, Athens was weakened due to its war with the Persian Empire. In 480 BC, the town was rebuilt. As the city was being rebuilt, theaters were also erected a fresh. These new theaters were considered as the iconic features of the Athens culture. The theaters were now formal. Civic education was carried out with the use of the three genres of art. This was, however, a trying time for the theatre then as there was still some pressure from the defeat of Athens by Persian Empire. The competition still went on though was losing some importance.

The Buildings and the Costumes

When Athens was being built again, the designs were changed. Theatres were constructed in a form that resembles the new modern art. At first, people considered the place where those that were performing as the only place that should be called the theatre. The choir and those backing the performances had no space in the theatre. They were however incorporated in the new designs. An orchestra was built large enough to accommodate even the fifteen members of the choir used for backup. The costumes were also changed. Masks became a common artier in the performances. Masks were mostly employed at the time of the religious festivals. The masks were made of the organic materials and it was the most iconic invention that was achieved in the theatre.