The Divine: A Play For Sarah Bernhardt BY: JOHN RICE

Spatial Experience
The Constans Theatre was truly surprising and impressive; this is now my third semester here at The University of Florida, and I had no idea that in the Reitz Union we had such a theatre. Above is a picture of me just prior to entering the theatre as I was waiting in the atrium for my Gator1 ID to be scanned for admission. Upon entering the theatre I was allowed to sit off the side farther up the stairs because of my temporary handicap. I was secluded from the crowd allowing me to really get into the play. I was thrown off when the play started and the actors were coming through the crowd, but it added excitement. When I was in the theatre I no longer felt I was just in Gainesville, Florida watching a play because I was told to for a class, but it felt like I was in a more sophisticated/higher level place, as if I was at Yale or Harvard.
Social Experience
Photo from Virginia Tech School of Performing Arts

I attended the play with one of my good friends whom I had met at the beginning of the previous semester. We planned ahead of time to reserve our tickets for the same night, and even though he does not have an injury the seating staff allowed him to sit next to me in the spots higher up. We did not know what the play was about ahead of time, so everything we were watching was new to us and sometimes confusing. It was good to go with a friend because several different times we would get lost, and were able to ask each other questions about what was going on, or one of us would catch something that was going on that the other didn't. This shared experience with my friend will not determine if we have a good relationship or not, but many shared experiences and events like this one will, and strong friendships are what makes our life the good life.

Cultural and Intellectual Experience
Photo from University of Florida, College of the Arts

When I walked into Contans Theatre on the night I went I had no idea what the play was about or even the name of it. As I begin to watch the play's theme of hypocrisy became apparent. It showed me that we need not just focus on our lives and just the way we see things, but we need to go beyond and focus on society and the cultures of others. The play should a corrupt Church that was covering up its skeletons, and showed the media which were the actors whom put on plays to call out these injustices. The play made me realize that especially in the society we live in today with so much fake news and media that tries to undermine our government, and president I need to stay alert and find information for myself to truly be informed.

Emotional Experience
Photo from Michel Marc Bouchard

The play dealt with deep topics that can be tough to handle. It showed us how destructive and unfair we can be as humans. It also shows that there is always hope though, and even though there is bad in this world, there will always be people who are ready to fight that bad and call attention to it.

Created By
John Rice


Virginia Tech School of Performing Arts, University of Florida, College of the Arts, Michel Marc Bouchard

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