The repertory theatre movement, 1907-1917
In this thesis I examine the development in the theatre outside London, known as the "repertory theatre movement". I concentrate on the first three theatres founded, the Gaiety in Manchester, the Citizens' in Glasgow, and the Liverpool Repertory Theatre, all of which came into prominence between 1907 and 1917, the ten years which span the life of the Gaiety Theatre. The roots of the movement are traced to Germany and its network of subsidised theatres, and to the Abbey in Dublin, which played a crucial role as the catalyst for the movement The British background to the movement is also explored. A discussion of the theatres' structure follows, with their establishment, organisation, finances, policy and the audience they attracted, surveyed. I then consider the repertoire of each theatre analysing which plays they performed, which new authors encouraged, and why the emphasis lay on a certain kind of drama. The backgrounds of the actors and actresses who joined the repertory theatres are discussed, as are their techniques, and how they adapted to the strictures of repertory. Similarly, the directors who undertook a huge workload were forced to find a new way of working which would ensure high artistic standards, while producing a large number of plays. I shall look at this development of a new stagecraft in a historical context and evaluate its strengths and weak-nesses.