Good Life Performance The Divine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt Ben ingham

The Spatial Experience

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I had been inside Constans Theatre before, but when I walked into the building, I'll be honest I wasn't too excited. I had heard that the play was going to be very long, but I became more optimistic as I walked into the lobby.

My seat was on the far right side against the wall which definitely was disappointing. I could still see, but it's like when you go to a movie and you really want to sit in the middle of the theater- it just makes for a better viewing experience.

As we were waiting for the show to start, "snow" started to fall onstage which kind of built the suspense up as the play started. When the lights went down, it definitely got me in the right vibe to watch the play.

It was interesting how the actors and actresses used the space of the theater- I remember watching them come from down the stairs behind the audience and pass in front of the front row as well.

Location is a huge part of the Good Life. Experiences can either be augmented or undermined by location. A perfect example of this is a wedding- whether it happens on a beach or in a church makes a difference to those involved. The way that a space is designed can also make a huge difference on how an experience is perceived. That's why old-style churches are designed similarly with high vaulted ceilings and why many families are choosing an open floor plan for their homes these days.

The Social Experience

I attended the performance with my friends. I attended it with my suite mate (not pictured here), my friend from my floor, and his girlfriend. My suite mate had already prepared for the play on his own, but my friend from my floor, Austin, and I sort of got ready together.

I basically just put on some super hype music and got dressed up. He was just relaxing and listening to the music while I did my hair and stuff. His girlfriend was just parking and we walked over together, meeting my suite mate at the theater.

I was kind of disappointed because we were not able to sit together. The person who seated us sat me and my suite mate separate from Austin and his girlfriend because there were only two seats left in the row. I did like being able to discuss the play with them during the intermission and afterwards as well. The fact that we were able to share the entire experience together made the fact that I originally was not excited to see the play, a little more bearable.

My personal belief is that the Good Life is all about shared experiences. One of my strongest beliefs/morals is community- eliminating division to draw closer to one another. Shared experiences is one of the best ways to build bonds and relationships that cultivate community.

The Cultural and Intellectual Experience

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The central issue addressed in the performance is the scandal of the Church and abuse of power. The play also touched on issues of child labor. I had heard and been aware of the issues of the church and child labor but I didn't know anything in detail. I don't think the performance changed my views about the Church- they'd always been disappointed and disgusted- but I will say it was interesting to see the perspective of the abused and to see how he interacted with the Church afterwards.

I don't have a relationship to any of the issues discussed, but I was adopted from Vietnam and the child labor issues in Vietnam are still prevalent.

The Emotional Experience

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The issues of the Church were always kept under wraps and weren't talked about even though everyone knew they were happening. This play along with the movie "Spotlight" and other testimonies shed light and exposed/brought more awareness to the issue. It's unpleasant to think that an institution so trusted could be so corrupt, but it's necessary and this play allows us to come to terms with that.

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