This paper studies the role of the director in theatre. In German-speaking countries the director is considered nowadays as the most important player of the theatre, there exists even the term « director’s theatre ». The paper investigates three facets of this topic. First, it shows the historical development of the role of the director from a servant of the author in the 19th century to the master of the theatre. Second, in interviews with directors, actors, or authors and in a questionnaire with theatregoers I investigated how the role of the director is perceived and how they feel about it. Finally, the paper describes how the director influences contemporary theatre. To assess this influence, 37 productions were analysed comparing the actual production with the original text.
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