The Spatial Experience
As I entered the theatre, the lighting was immediately dimmed compared to the lighting outside out of the theatre. The dimming of the lights forced the focus to be only on the stage and helped to make it seem like there were not that many people in the theatre. This helped to make the show a more personal experience. I looked around the auditorium/theatre as I walked in and noticed the amount of people. However, as the lights dimmed even more once the play started I wasn't bothered by the crowd at all. As I sat down, I realized I was sitting in the center of the theatre and I could see everything perfectly. Being able to see the play directly head on was an advantage because I felt as though the actors were looking at me and talking out to me which made the play even more of a personal experience. When thinking about being able to live the "Good Life", the place that you are in is important. You must feel comfortable and at peace in that place so that you can focus on finding your meaning/truth. Comfort is one of the most important aspects of whether a place is going to be beneficial to your search for meaning. I was very comfortable in that theatre as I knew that I was surrounded by other students who were on a similar journey as me.
The Social Experience
My roommate and I planned to attend the performance together on February 1. I have known my roommate since I was in second grade so we have been best friends for many, many years. On the night of the performance, she had class so we planned to meet at the theatre. I changed out of my typical running shorts and sweatshirt outfit and into a dress and my new booties. As I walked to the theatre, I was wondering what this play was going to be about. I finally arrived at Constans Theatre and met my roommate outside. We took a few pictures outside of the theatre and then proceeded to walk into the theatre and take a seat together. As we walked into the performance, I noticed that there were many people that did come here by themselves and there were also big groups of friends that came on the same day to watch the play together. I felt that it was nice to have someone that I knew there with me so that we could not only discuss the play afterwards but we could also experience the whole thing together and keep each other on top of our work. The importance of shared experiences in the Good Life is to be able to bounce our ideas of the play off of multiple people. My roommate and I stayed for the "talk-back" with the actors and this helped to understand more of the play and to get a better feel on who the actors and actresses were. I really enjoyed this part because the audience could ask questions of the actors and we learned more about the backgrounds of the actors. As we were walking home from the performance, we had a great talk about the play and all misunderstandings were discussed. For example, as my roommate and I were walking home from the play she was explaining something to me that I did not understand about the play at all and I don't think that I would have ever caught onto it if I had seen the play alone.
Outside of Constans Theatre
The Cultural and Intellectual Experience
- The time and place of the play is December 1905 in Quebec City.
- The play was focused around two young male characters, Michaud and Talbot, who come from completely different social classes, and their opposing views on many ideas such as religion. The young men are ordered to deliver a letter to the beautiful and famous, Sarah Bernhardt, to inform her that she is no longer allowed to perform in their city. However, the letter only sparked her to want to show off on stage to the Government.
- I did not know much about the play or the subject matter in the play before. I only knew a little about the setting which was during the Industrial Revolution. I knew about the factories, the terrible working conditions and the fact that kids were working in the factories illegally.
- The performance deepened my understanding of the clashes between social classes and the completely terrible working conditions of the factories. For example, the fact that the kids in the factories were forced to hide underground if someone came into the factory is outrageous. The subject matter correlates with my own life in the fact that there still are the clashes of religions and cultures throughout the world and the realm of politics discusses them all of the time. The clashes of cultures and religions is what is causing tensions between countries today.
Playbill from the performance of The Divine
The Emotional Experience
The Divine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt presents us the opportunity for katharsis by showing us some examples of the character's undergoing processes of 'coming clean' and understanding what it is to be human and happy. For example, when Sarah Bernhardt is talking to journalists throughout most of the play she needs to perfect what she says and act like she is perfect herself. However, by the end of the play she talks with the reporters and doesn't care what she says; she just decides to say what she wants and even though the journalists are appalled at what she says, she doesn't care. She proceeds to go and visit This represents 'coming clean' and accepting being human and not being expected to perfect in every aspect of life. Overall, the play presents many examples of characters 'coming clean' and leaves the audience feeling empowered.
"Claire Trevor Theatre." Claire Trevor Theatre | Claire Trevor School of the Arts | UC Irvine. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Feb. 2017.
"The Divine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt." The Divine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt | Events | College of the Arts | University of Florida. N.p., n.d. Web. 05 Feb. 2017.