The toga play was a theatrical genre popular at the end of the nineteenth century and the start of the twentieth century. It combined plots from popular novels with inspiration from Victorian painters and composers, all set against a classically themed background.
The toga play combined plots from popular novels with visual inspiration from contemporary Victorian painters such as Lawrence Alma-Tadema and Frederick Lord Leighton, and music from composers such as Charles Gounod, Giacomo Meyerbeer and Alexandre Luigini,all set against a classically themed background.
The plays have been described by David Mayer as reflecting the cultural and social anxieties of their age, such as the rise of feminism, fears about mass migration, class conflict, and the future of the British Empire.
Toga plays appeared both in mainstream theatre and in music hall entertainments from around the 1880s and were popular in Great Britain and the United States until the start of the twentieth century.Among the notable examples were Claudian (1883), The Sign of the Cross (1895), and Ben-Hur (1899). They crossed over into silent film, for example, in Ben-Hur (1907) and The Barbarian Ingomar (1908).
Musical theatre is a form of theatrical performance that combines songs, spoken dialogue, acting and dance. The story and emotional content of a musical – humor, pathos, love, anger – are communicated through words, music, movement and technical aspects of the entertainment as an integrated whole. Although musical theatre overlaps with other theatrical forms like opera and dance, it may be distinguished by the equal importance given to the music as compared with the dialogue, movement and other elements. Since the early 20th century, musical theatre stage works have generally been called, simply, musicals.
A modern melodrama is a dramatic work in which the plot, typically sensationalized and for a strong emotional appeal, takes precedence over detailed characterization. Melodramas typically concentrate on dialogue that is often bombastic or excessively sentimental, rather than action. Characters are often flat, and written to fulfill stereotypes. Melodramas are typically set in the private sphere of the home, focusing on morality and family issues, love, and marriage, often with challenges from an outside source, such as a "temptress", a scoundrel, or an aristocratic villain. A melodrama on stage, filmed, or on television is usually accompanied by dramatic and suggestive music that offers cues to the audience of the drama being presented.
Stephen Boyd was a Northern Irish actor. He appeared in some 60 films, most notably as the villainous Messala in Ben-Hur (1959), a role that earned him the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture. He received his second Golden Globe Award nomination for Billy Rose's Jumbo (1962). He also appeared, sometimes as a hero and sometimes as a malefactor, in the major big-screen productions The Night Heaven Fell (1958), The Bravados (1958), Imperial Venus (1962), The Fall of the Roman Empire (1964), Genghis Khan (1965), Fantastic Voyage (1966) and Shalako (1968).
Miklós Rózsa was a Hungarian-American composer trained in Germany (1925–1931) and active in France (1931–1935), the United Kingdom (1935–1940), and the United States (1940–1995), with extensive sojourns in Italy from 1953 onward. Best known for his nearly one hundred film scores, he nevertheless maintained a steadfast allegiance to absolute concert music throughout what he called his "double life".
Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ is a novel by Lew Wallace, published by Harper and Brothers on November 12, 1880, and considered "the most influential Christian book of the nineteenth century". It became a best-selling American novel, surpassing Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin (1852) in sales. The book also inspired other novels with biblical settings and was adapted for the stage and motion picture productions.
Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ is a 1925 American silent epic adventure-drama film directed by Fred Niblo and written by June Mathis based on the 1880 novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ by General Lew Wallace. Starring Ramon Novarro as the title character, the film is the first feature-length adaptation of the novel and second overall, following the 1907 short.
Ben Hur is a 1907 American silent drama film set in ancient Rome, the first screen adaptation of Lew Wallace's popular 1880 novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ. Co-directed by Sidney Olcott and Frank Oakes Rose, this "photoplay" was produced by the Kalem Company of New York City, and its scenes, including the climactic chariot race, were filmed in the city's borough of Brooklyn.
A tableau vivant, French for 'living picture', is a static scene containing one or more actors or models. They are stationary and silent, usually in costume, carefully posed, with props and/or scenery, and may be theatrically lit. It thus combines aspects of theatre and the visual arts.
Victorian literature refers to English literature during the reign of Queen Victoria (1837–1901). The 19th century is considered by some to be the Golden Age of English Literature, especially for British novels. It was in the Victorian era that the novel became the leading literary genre in English. English writing from this era reflects the major transformations in most aspects of English life, from scientific, economic, and technological advances to changes in class structures and the role of religion in society. Famous novelists from this period include Charles Dickens, William Makepeace Thackeray, the three Brontë sisters, Elizabeth Gaskell, George Eliot, Thomas Hardy, and Rudyard Kipling.
Classical music of the United Kingdom is taken in this article to mean classical music in the sense elsewhere defined, of formally composed and written music of chamber, concert and church type as distinct from popular, traditional, or folk music. The term in this sense emerged in the early 19th century, not long after the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland came into existence in 1801. Composed music in these islands can be traced in musical notation back to the 13th century, with earlier origins. It has never existed in isolation from European music, but has often developed in distinctively insular ways within an international framework. Inheriting the European classical forms of the 18th century, patronage and the academy and university establishment of musical performance and training in the United Kingdom during the 19th century saw a great expansion. Similar developments occurred in the other expanding states of Europe and their empires. Within this international growth the traditions of composition and performance centred in the United Kingdom, including the various cultural strands drawn from its different provinces, have continued to evolve in distinctive ways through the work of many famous composers.
Light music is a less-serious form of Western classical music, which originated in the 18th and 19th centuries and continues today. Its heyday was in the mid‑20th century. The style is through-composed, usually shorter orchestral pieces and suites designed to appeal to a wider context and audience than more sophisticated forms such as the concerto, the symphony and the opera.
Laurence Stanley Payne was an English actor and novelist.
A solo performance, sometimes referred to as a one-man show or one-woman show, features a single person telling a story for an audience, typically for the purpose of entertainment. This type of performance comes in many varieties, including autobiographical creations, comedy acts, novel adaptations, vaudeville, poetry, music and dance. In 1996, Rob Becker's Defending the Caveman became the longest running solo play in the history of Broadway.
Ben-Hur was an 1899 theatrical adaptation of the novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ (1880) by Lew Wallace. The story was dramatized by William W. Young and produced by Marc Klaw and A. L. Erlanger. The stage production was notable for its elaborate use of spectacle, including live horses for the famous chariot race. The hippodrama had six acts with incidental music written by American composer Edgar Stillman Kelley. The stage production opened at the Broadway Theater in New York City on November 29, 1899, and became a hit Broadway show. Traveling versions of the production, including a national tour that ran for twenty-one years, played in the United States, Great Britain, and Australia. By the end of its run in April 1920, the play had been seen by more than twenty million people and earned over $10 million at the box office. There have been other stage adaptations of Wallace's novel, as well as several motion picture versions.
English literature is literature written in the English language from the United Kingdom, its Crown Dependencies and Overseas Territories, the Republic of Ireland, the United States, and the countries of the former British Empire. The English language has developed over the course of more than 1,400 years. The earliest forms of English, a set of Anglo-Frisian dialects brought to Great Britain by Anglo-Saxon invaders in the fifth century, are called Old English. Beowulf is the most famous work in Old English, and has achieved national epic status in England, despite being set in Scandinavia. However, following the Norman conquest of England in 1066, the written form of the Anglo-Saxon language became less common. Under the influence of the new aristocracy, French became the standard language of courts, parliament, and polite society. The English spoken after the Normans came is known as Middle English. This form of English lasted until the 1470s, when the Chancery Standard, a London-based form of English, became widespread. Geoffrey Chaucer (1343–1400), author of The Canterbury Tales, was a significant figure in the development of the legitimacy of vernacular Middle English at a time when the dominant literary languages in England were still French and Latin. The invention of the printing press by Johannes Gutenberg in 1439 also helped to standardise the language, as did the King James Bible (1611), and the Great Vowel Shift.
Urban Gothic is a subgenre of Gothic fiction, film horror and television dealing with industrial and post-industrial urban society. It was pioneered in the mid-19th century in Britain, Ireland and the United States and developed in British novels such as Robert Louis Stevenson's Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde (1886), and Irish novels such as Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray (1890), and Bram Stoker's Dracula (1897). In the twentieth century, urban Gothic influenced the creation of the subgenres of Southern Gothic and suburban Gothic. From the 1980s, interest in the urban Gothic revived with books like Anne Rice's Vampire Chronicles and a number of graphic novels that drew on dark city landscapes, leading to adaptations in film including Batman (1989), The Crow (1994) and From Hell (2001), as well as influencing films like Seven (1995).
Deux heures moins le quart avant Jésus-Christ is a 1982 French comedy film directed by Jean Yanne. The film relates the story of the garage mechanic Ben-Hur Marcel, also known as Aminemephet (Coluche), who gets wrapped up organizing a plot against Caesar. The picture is an anachronistic parody of Bible films like Ben-Hur, somewhat comparable to Monty Python's Life of Brian (1979). It has become a cult film in France.
Ingomar, the Barbarian is a 1908 American silent short drama film directed by D. W. Griffith. It has been placed in the same genre as the theatrical toga play. It is based on the play Der Sohn der Wildnis by Friedrich Halm, translated by Maria Ann Lovell as Ingomar, the Barbarian.
Judah Ben-Hur, shortened to Ben-Hur, is a fictional character, the title character and protagonist from Lew Wallace's 1880 novel Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ. The book covers the character's adventures and struggle against the Roman Empire as he tries to restore honor to his family's name after being falsely accused of attacking the Roman governor. Judah encounters Jesus Christ and becomes a Christian.
Rosemary Julia Barrow was a Welsh art historian who specialised in classical themes in Victorian art and the painting of Lawrence Alma-Tadema in particular, whose reputation she attempted to restore.
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