German-Speaking Countries

Katritzky, M. A. (2018). German-Speaking Countries. In: Balme, Christopher B.; Vescovo, Piermario and Vianello, Daniele eds. Commedia dell'Arte in Context. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, pp. 98–105.



This chapter provides a chronological summary of documented commedia dell’arte influenced activity within the borders of the German-speaking regions from the early modern period to 1770. It first considers the Munich court wedding of 1568. This ranged from commedia-inspired festival costumes and short comic routines featuring commedia dell’arte stock characters, to at least one full-length commedia dell’arte performance, starring the internationally renowned composer and musician Orlando di Lasso. Then it surveys commedia-related entertainments at imperial and other German-speaking courts from the 1570s onwards, the activities of itinerant commedia troupes in the region throughout this period, and the eighteenth-century impact of the comédie italienne on German theatre.

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