17th Century Venetian Opera

2774 words 12 pages
|[Type the company name] |
|Seventeenth Century Venetian Opera |
|Cultural and Economic Factors |
| |
|Lauren A Rader |
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A distinguishing feature of new theaters was “the inclusion of several floors of boxes that provided elevated, separated, and private spaces from with paying customers, apparently patricians and distinguished foreigners could watch performances” (Muir 335). From his book, “The Short, Lascivious Lives of Two Venetian Theaters”. Eugene Johnson, talks about box seats creating a feeling of premier social space that was private but at the same time public. Yet, Venetians soon started to use these box seats as modern day motel rooms; “the box itself became a stage for imagination and metaphor for the libertine style”(Muir 335). The box seats were called plachi. The Jesuits complained almost immediately that these “wicked acts…creating scandal” in the plachi were immoral and provided another reason to promote their anti-theater cause. There is no real evidence of these scandalous acts taking place, but accounts say that boxes read on the floor “per le donne”. During these obscene comedies, obscene acts were taking place at the same time on the other side of the thin wooden box seats; for Venetian theater was full of scandal. In 1606, Antonio Persis wrote in defense of the papal cause, criticizing the Venetians for their “addiction to avarice and luxuria” (Rosand 412). He said that the theaters were luxaria, and because of his account, the Jesuits destroyed the