Terence's plays go further yet and invite actual contemplation of the human condition, what, no doubt, the Roman tragedies written during the late Republic also did, many of which were based on Greek myth and drama. Unfortunately not a single play of this sort has been preserved intact. Conversely, the great arenas found all over the Roman world, of which the Colosseum is the most visible reminder, housed sporting events and spectacles. Many of these survive, but if they ever served up any theatrical performances at all, it was more likely mime than some genre of classical drama.
How such a connection arose between these two genres, so removed from each other in time, is difficult to imagine. Was there a later Roman comic tradition which spanned the entire Middle Ages and carried these comic characters across nearly two millennia with remarkable continuity? If so, why is there no clear evidence of this in the historical record? Or do certain types of comedy and comic characterization have such enduring appeal in this part of the world that they will surface again and again, in spite of changes in the cultural climate? It is a question of diffusion versus independent origin—!—where no credible answer is possible in the absence of better evidence.
We can define a number of possible melodrama genre …
Of course, all congregations use drama in worship. Scripture read with passion and intelligence is drama. A song that tells the salvation story is drama. Worship as a whole is drama. The best worship services, the best liturgies, are those that reenact the drama of God and God’s people, traversing the contours of the covenant life. For that very reason, other “mini” dramas, inserted into the liturgy, can distract from the primary work of the people. On the other hand, thoughtful, well-written drama can be used fruitfully in worship: to point out paradox or hypocrisy, to deepen confession, to give expression to anguish, to testify to unmerited grace. It can illumine places where the changeless gospel intersects with our changing times. In a world becoming less literate and more oral and aural, drama is a powerful—and often overlooked—tool for proclaiming that gospel.
Theatre genres and styles revision for Theatre Studies
When it is all added up, the similarity to early Greek theatre, especially Old Comedy, is both transparent and telling, which makes this information appear suspect. It looks like an attempt by later Romans to invent some sort of "birth" for their theatre and, in the absence of real evidence, a scenario has been constructed for the advent of this art in early Rome, a historical fiction that parallels the rise of drama in Greece. Moreover, when other sources claim the content of Fescennine verses at one point got so out of hand it had to be controlled by law, a situation resembling closely the transition from Old to Middle Greek Comedy—remember ' comment that it was not possible "to ridicule anyone openly, when those who were ridiculed would sue poets in court"— it only heightens the impression that all this may be merely legend borrowed from the Greeks to fill a historical void.
Masks, stock gestures and catchphrases were prevalent in this genre
Up a bit higher on the chain is Drama Ministry (), one of a family of church-related resource sites from Communication Resources, Inc. More focused than either of the other sites, this site offers primarily chancel dramas. For $80/year you get full, free access to hundreds of scripts (eighty new scripts each year), again helpfully indexed by title, theme, and Scripture. Looking up a particular skit, you can also read a synopsis of the action and learn its dramatic genre, cast breakdown, and performance time. According to the site, each sketch also provides “comprehensive Director Notes, targeted acting exercises, Music Links, and Pastor Notes with related Scriptures and themes to tie everything together.”
Comedy Unit for Drama | The Drama Teacher
The role that this type of character shows an interesting dynamic, particularly in the sense that the inclusion of the figure of a clown is always fitting and appropriate, regardless of the genre of the play.