This piece argues that early modern theatre made routine use of both title-boards and location-boards: painted signs bearing, respectively, the title of the play being acted and the location of the action. In particular, it draws on examples from the stage directions of the amateur dramatist William Percy, who seems to envisage almost a hierarchy of different information contained within written signs around the playing area, and also looks to visual evidence. These signs, I will argue, made a considerable difference to the experience of early modern theatre. What is more, their status as written texts generated by playwriting means they are members of the family of "documents of performance" which constitute the text of a play.
|Title of host publication||Rethinking Theatrical Documents in Shakespeare’s England|
|Publisher||Thomson: Arden Shakespeare|
|Publication status||Accepted/In press - 1 Sep 2018|