I arrived to the auditorium pretty close to the start of the play. I was ushered into a solitary seat in the back, with the lights already dimmed and the crowd already silent. I was afraid that my spot would cause me to not be able to hear or see the action. However, I was clearly mistaken when I heard the booming voice of the first actor. In the dark, I was not able to fully anticipate the size of the crowd, but the sound of the applause at the end of each act told me a lot of people gathered for this event. It wasn’t until intermission that I saw just how many students, adults and faculty congregated to watch. I felt like I was a part of something bigger, however had a very exclusive experience as a viewer during the program. This encouragement of the arts is an important aspect of the Good Life.
While I did sit alone, I made previous plans to meet up with friends during intermission. This is when we decided to take pictures. It was a madhouse during the break, so it was very difficult to discuss the play. My other friends came in time to all sit together, and told me the were laughing at the play all the time, finding it very comical. However, by me sitting alone, I had a more somber experience, while of course laughing at a few scenes. I was more intently listening, and laughed more entirely than out loud. After the play, my friends and I went to Steak n’ Shake, and the shared experience gave us a great topic. While we all watched the same play, we each had a slightly different understanding.
The central themes of the story were overcoming the social and political obstacles of being a part of the poor class, and fighting to receive the Good Life. I did not do any previous research before the play, so I had to figure the situations on my own. Have been given the opportunity to study any desire I had, I never thought about the feeling of running out of options to pursue. While I am trying to make the most of my options and find the right path, I am not as limited as people were back then.
Similar to how Bernhardt overcame her background, this play was about overcoming obstacles. However, there is a difference in rising up from your past or hiding it. You must be honest with what you came from, or you will never be happy and close with the people of your future no matter how hard you try. In realizing this, we are all given the opportunity to come clean. Because feeling alone is sometimes worse than being judged by the truth.