Monday, January 18, 2010

Julius Ceasar

Ahhh! Took a little break and now I'm ready to knock this second blog out of the way. This one is to be about the play that Daniel P. Barbara Glenn(that's what it said in his bio) was the lead director. This man also happens to be my teacher and is giving extra credit to me if I write a quality bit about his play and why the modern adaptation.
Before I get into the actual play I would like to talk about what all it took for me to get into the play. After eating dinner I rushed over to the auditorium with not much sense of urgency. Being Saturday night I thought that it would be the best time to enjoy the play while everyone else was out partying. But as I entered the school I soon found out that the play was packed and I had been put on a waiting list by my friends. After some waiting(that is what you do on a waiting list) we were admitted into the play but only into the house section. Luckily, as we sat down into the house section, some seats opened up on the stage. Once I was in my seat I was ready to take good mental notes so I would have plenty to say.
As the play began the first thing that I noticed was the added affect the seating had on the play. It was different being so close to the action but also I felt like I was at a sports game too. Instead of the seating stretching out they went more vertical, so that the audience could be right on top of the action.
The second thing that I analyzed was that the characters were playing their own gender and that the actors had on regular street clothes. Both of these changes to the usual look of Shakespeare type plays helped me better connect with my friends on stage. Many time the costumes can distance the actors from "normal people" but in this case the lack of costumes drew us together.
As for the more obvious adaptations, I was very pleased with them. By changing letters to text, government elections to school elections, and changing Shakespearian talk to modern slang it helped the play be more appreciated and understood by the younger population. I would say though that if you nothing at all about the original play, you would be very confused. I had friends sitting with me that had not read Julius Caesar before and they were very confused about the plot of the play. That can be the one drawback of a modern adaptation. When the whole play turns into a inside joke, you must know the original to understand what is funny.
One thing that I mentioned awhile ago but have not talked about it yet is the fact that the actors and actresses played their own genders. This added to the overall irony of the play. It also was worth some shock value to see what I assumed to be two men, kissing before a great battle. Overall it was an interesting and enjoyable play and a good work by everyone involved.

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