I was not expecting the atmosphere that the theater had. It is so well constructed and professional giving it the feeling of going off somewhere else rather than going to a show right on campus. The theater itself is visually appealing as well as maintaining functionality and comfort. We were pretty far back in the seating arrangement yet my view was not impaired or obstructed. I was immensely impressed with the design of the set and found myself wondering throughout the play how long it took them to build. Not only was the set nice to look at, it was also functional and offered the benefits of easy maneuverability for quick scene changes. I don't think that space has to be the end all or be all of finding the Good Life but it definitely helps. The play would have been the same material no matter where it was performed but it was more enjoyable with the location of a theater. It's all about what you make of your location.
I attended the performance with two of my friends and we all met up in the Reitz outside the theater. Watching a play with a bunch of strangers was interesting, especially being in the back of the theater I was able to observe the reactions people had to certain scenes or lines. Overall, I was really impressed by the maturity and respect the whole audience showed as plays and or mandatory events aren't always everyone's cup of tea. Attending with friends enhanced my experience by giving me someone I could comfortably talk to about the play and at intermission discuss. Having shared experiences isn't necessary for the Good Life but it would make it more memorable and meaningful in my opinion. Going through a really impactful experience with someone else gives you another person to to reflect on and talk about it with who understands the gravity of what you experienced.
UF College of the Arts. Web. <http://arts.ufl.edu/in-the-loop/news/the-divine-a-play-for-sarah-bernhardt-opens-january-27/>. I love history or all things set in an earlier time period so this was interesting for me. I was not aware going into the play that it was set in 1905 Quebec but the language, references, and costumes made it easy to pick up on quickly. The central issues were exploitation and the power of Art. The sexual exploitation of Talbot at the hands of a priest and the exploitation of his family in the shoe factory were very prevalent themes. Art was represented as a healing power in the face of such trials illuminating the injustice of the church to forbid something that helps others in their own "spiritual" way. This relates to my own life because with these mandatory assignments I was freaking out trying to figure out how to fit them in my schedule as I was very stressed and busy that particular week. However, when I got the the Harn I was instantly relaxed and felt more at ease. The art helped me center myself and to stop stressing, allowing me to clear my head. Art can have very therapeutic effects for people and no one has the right to take that away from others.
The Divine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt provides us an opportunity for catharsis because of the material it presents and the tie in to the power of art as we are sitting there witnessing a piece of live art. I always feel invigorated watching or reading a story that ends with the main characters resolving their problems in a momentous event. In a way watching others get a happy ending makes the viewer feels a sense of release, catharsis, as everything falls into place and you leave with the knowledge that the characters will be ok and their lives are on the right track. In my life the uncertainty of not knowing gives me anxiety and so for me I really enjoy stories that have a nice wrapped up ending rather than a cliff hanger, its my own kind of catharsis.