When did pantomimes start?

Rich produced what is considered to be the first real pantomime in 1721 entitled The Magician; or Harlequin a Director. The character of Harlequin was transformed into a mischievous, funny magician as well remaining the love interest of Columbine.

When did pantomime first begin?

Pantomime has a long theatrical history in Western culture dating back to the era of classical theatre. It developed partly from the 16th century commedia dell’arte tradition of Italy and other European and British stage traditions, such as 17th-century masques and music hall.

When did pantomime come to the UK?

By the early 18th century, Commedia characters began to appear on the London stage in early pantomimes which were based on classical stories, set to music but without speech.

Who invented pantomime?

A rough, uneducated man called John Rich played a key role in the emergence of pantomime. Rich was a dancer, acrobat and mime artist and during the 1720s he was managing a theatre at Lincoln’s Inn Fields. What he created was a new kind of entertainment.

How did pantomime become a British tradition?

Pantomime first came to Britain in the 18th century from the ‘commedia dell’arte’, the Italian tradition of improvised theatre. The stories of the commedia dell’arte had many ‘stock’ characters in them such as clowns and jesters and a ‘baddie’.

Is panto a British thing?

The modern pantomime is seen as a quintessentially British affair, baffling visitors to these shores with its eccentric take on fairy tales and vocal audience-participating plots.

What is the most popular pantomime of all time?

Cinderella is one of the most well-known pantomimes in the world and is based on a traditional fairytale of the ‘rags to riches’ story of an orphaned girl living with her stepmother and evil stepsisters.

What’s the difference between mime and pantomime?

Pantomime is the art of creating the illusion of reality by dealing with imaginary objects or situations. Its art rests on the ability to imply weight, texture, line, rhythm and force to the air around them. Mime, on the other hand, is the art of acting silently through various kinds of theatrical movement.

How long did some panto performances last?

Pantomimes would sometimes go on for hours and hours (and hours…) Pantomimes nowadays tend to last around the two hour mark, and (mercifully) don’t run on much longer than two and a half hours. However, some of the old pantomimes became infamous for how long they could go on for.

Did you know facts about pantomimes?

In the USA, pantomime does in fact refer to the silent art of miming, but the word actually comes from the Latin pantomimus, which in turn comes from Greek’s pantomimos. Panto meant ‘all’ and mimos alluded to a dancer who would play all the roles of a story.

Are there pantomimes in America?

Although pantomime was not frequently produced in the US during the 20th century and is not well known in America, productions of pantomime, both professional and amateur, have been seen nearly every year somewhere in the US over the past couple of decades.

What do Americans call a pantomime?

Although it’s not (quite) universal in the USA, the words “Pantomime” and “Mime” are interchangeable.