The Spatial Experience
I arrived early to the performance and had to sit in the lobby for approximately 10 minutes. Upon entering the theater, I got a sense of excitement. The theater was much nicer than I had expected. Walking down the aisles of red, velvet chairs, I saw the stage and the quality of the set surprised me. They were showering the stage with fake snow, which I thought was a nice touch because it briefly touched on the setting of the play, which was Quebec City, Canada. When the lights dimmed and the audience hushed, I wished that I had a bag popcorn because I was anticipating an excellent performance. I was seated in the fifth row, directly in the middle. I enjoyed that because that is where I prefer to sit at the movie theater as well. Sitting up front in the middle enabled me to see the stage very well, but when the actors came in from the door behind me, I had to look around and watch them perform that way, which created a sense of perspective. The performers were using their environment to entertain their audience. This shows how important place is in the Good Life and how place can affect the experience of someone.
The Social Experience
The Emotional Experience
As Dr. Pagán explains in her online lectures on the Antigone, theatre presents “topics that are socially uncomfortable, politically contentious, religiously irreverent, or culturally radical.” This was the case on multiple occasions during the play. The main example of this came when Talbot, seeking to become a priest, sleeps with Madeleine. This was surprising in the sense that religiously, priests are sworn to celibacy. Seeing the two flirt and kiss and allude to what they wanted to do was a little uncomfortable for a moment, but that is an aspect of the theater. Theatre “gives the audience an opportunity to look at itself to examine its less-than-noble qualities and in the process to ‘come clean’ about what it means to be human and to be happy.” A part of being human is doing things that you know shouldn't necessarily be done, especially if it makes you happy. This was the case in the play with Talbot and Madeleine along with Michaud and the theater. He had chosen to be a priest but also yearned to perform. He wanted to write a play and act with the Divine Sarah Bernhardt. Both of these experiences provided us an opportunity for katharsis, or "coming clean", because we could relate to the characters. Some might associate themselves with the characters in the play and when they did something, it may have given them an opportunity to "come clean" and experience katharsis.
The Total Experience