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Traditional Turkish Theater

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Traditional Turkish Theatre, a term referring to shows that were performed during the Ottoman Empire, includes Köy Sehirlik Oyunları, and Halk Tiyatrosu. Köy Seyirlik Oyunları are based on the ceremonies of the civilizations in Asia Minor as well as on Shaman ceremonies inherited from Turkish ancestors. Halk Tiyatrosu flourished in urban areas, and this type of theatre comprises Karagöz (shadow puppet theatre), Kukla (puppet theatre), Meddah (storytelling) and Ortaoyunu (street theatre with live players, comparable to Comedia dell’Arte).The most important aspect of these types of theatre is that they are based on improvisation, and not on a written text. The main element of traditional Turkish theatre is comedy. The plays were not organized to be performed regularly, but were usually seen as part of traditional ceremonies or social gatherings.