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Les Cinq Continets du Théâtre. Faits et légends de la culture matérielle de l’acteur (in French)

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Eugenio Barba et Nicola Savarese
Les Cinq Continents du Théâtre. Faits et légendes de la culture matérielle de l’acteur
Édition Deuxième époque, Lacoste (France), 2020. 407 pages, 1.400 illus. In French.
ISBN 978-2-37769-034-3

“D’où est-ce que je viens? Qui suis-je? Où est-ce que je vais?
Pour répondre à ces questions, nous devons envisager dans une autre perspective les innombrables formes, expériences, vestiges et mystères que l’histoire de notre profession nous a légués. C’est la seule façon de nous construire une boussole personelle pour traverser les cinq continents de notre métier: quand, où, comment, pour qui et pourquoi on fait du théâtre”. (Eugenio Barba)

Where do I come from? Who am I? Where do I go? In answering these questions, we have to look from a different perspective at the countless forms, experiences, finds and mysteries that the history of our profession has given us. It is the only way to build a personal compass to travel all around the five continents of our craft: when, where, how, for whom and why to make theatre” (Eugenio Barba).

The Five Continents of Theatre undertakes the exploration of the material culture of the actor, which involves the actors’ pragmatic relations and technical functionality, their behaviour, the norms and conventions that interact with those of the audience and the society in which actors and spectators equally take part.

Auxiliary techniques repeat themselves not only throughout different historical periods but also across all theatrical traditions. Interacting dialectically in the stratification of practices, they respond to basic needs that are common to all traditions when a performance has to be created and staged. A comparative overview of auxiliary techniques shows that the material culture of the actor, with its diverse processes, forms and styles, stems from the way in which actors respond to those same practical needs. The authors’ research for this aspect of theatre anthropology was based on examination of practices, texts and of 1400 images, chosen as exemplars.


Annelis Kuhlmann, Aarhus University (Denmark): NORDIC THEATRE STUDIES, Vol. 31, No. 2. 2019, 135–137

Ilaria Salonna-Rogozińska (Warsaw University), published in the Kultura i Społeczeństwo, Kwartalnik TOM LXIII Nr 1

Patrick Campbell, Manchester Metropolitan University (UK): Published in: Contemporary Theatre Review, 30(2), pp. 282–283

Lise Sofie Houe, PhD studerende ved Institut for Kommunikation og Kultur, afdeling for Dramaturgi og Musikvidenskab ved Aarhus Universitet, published on peripeti.dk, 20/11/2020

Jonah Salz, Asian Theatre Journal, Volume 38, Number 1, Spring 2021, pp. 329-333 (Review)

Weight 1,6 kg