An Historical Overview of the Three Periods of Ancient Athenian Comedy

The Alexandrine grammarians seem to have been the first to divide Greek comedy into what became the canonical three periods. Introduction Ancient Greek comedy was one of the final three principal dramatic forms in the theatre of classical Greece (the others being tragedy and the satyr play). Athenian comedy is conventionally divided into three periods: Old Comedy, Middle Comedy, and New Comedy. Old Comedy survives today[…]

Laughter Really Is Medicine for the Mind and Body

Whether in the form of a discreet titter or a full-on roar, laughter comes with many benefits for physical and mental health. Introduction Amusement and pleasant surprises – and the laughter they can trigger – add texture to the fabric of daily life. Those giggles and guffaws can seem like just silly throwaways. But laughter,[…]

Jack Benny and Harry Conn: Stumbling onto the Formula for Situation Comedy in 1932

The two quickly became partners, working closely together week in and out to create, edit, and perfect the dialog. It was 9:30 p.m. on Monday, May 2, 1932, and chilly in the old roof garden atop Broad-way’s New Amsterdam Theater. A small, glass-enclosed broadcasting booth had been erected on the stage where Florenz Ziegfeld once[…]