The theater was at first perception, small, as a result of the small hallway before the entrance. However, upon entering, the theater itself was rather large in comparison and nicely designed. The seats were all rather close to the stage bringing a further envelopment into the scenes created by the play and the set was beautifully created with a lot of details. I was seated in the very middle of the theater, making my view all the better. When the lights finally dimmed and the audience became silent with anticipation, I felt a rush of excitement to see what they play was about, being that the set was so well crafted. Even though the theater itself wasn't grand, its minuscule size contributed to the intimacy created with the play. Everything about where I was set the pace for how I would perceive the next 3 hours. In the middle of the small room, well decorated room, in a sea of people gazing upon the set stage I felt a sense of integration and one-ness with the play before me. Personally, I think place has a huge impact on the good life. Although it can be superseded by a superior cause, the place sets the scene and brings comfort to what happens within it. For instance, if I were to have watched this play in a run-down building, with hard metal seats, bad lighting, torn wall paper, etc. I'd probably be more disgusted by the place than pleased with the performance. Therefore, I find place to be more of a medium through which we enhance our good life.
I attended the show with my sister, who is also taking the Good Life. To get ready for the performance, we didn't do much except make dinner and get dressed. Being that I was with my sister, and we understand each other very well and conceive a lot of the same ideas, I feel as though it enhanced the performance. I not only found great pleasure hanging out with her, but I got to immerse myself in that world with her and discuss the different characters and conflicts within the play. The intellectual dialog and character analysis regarding the play brought further understanding and different viewpoints together to get a fuller understanding of the act. I believe that shared viewpoints and even contradicting viewpoints bring both affirmation and challenge to someones life and can reassure them of their previously conceived ideas, and challenge those of which they hold either tightly or weakly. Without shared experience we cannot have intellectual discussion and relate to others, as well as challenge our perception of things, something very important in the pursuit of the good life.
This play was set in 20th century Quebec, where church and state had not yet been separated and the church was more powerful than anything, even the government. While I know some background about the era in which this play was set, this play immersed me in that period and brought to light the conflict between poverty and capitalism, the church and theater, and the manipulation of women and children by men. While it is common knowledge that there was abuse of power by the church at this time and their ability to have so much control in state affairs and public action greatly corrupted its foundation, this play showed you the extent to which their corruption manifested into the lives of others. For instance, Brother Casgrain served a prime example of how the church exploits impoverish youth and his suicide exemplifies the extent to which this corruption has manifested. All in all, the play was an in depth look into the social and political issues of the 20th century, mainly revolving around the church's corruption, but also with smaller themes of poverty, child labor, and the social inferiority of women and children.
Like books and movies, theater provides subjects which challenge the way we conduct our lives and they way the world works around us. However, the theater, with its extravagance and extreme portrayals shows the world in its best and worst lights, bringing out the harsh reality of the society we live in and society as they were before us. For example, in this play the church was portrayed in its corruption and forces us to acknowledge that this was how the world worked and that this was our past. It allows us to be honest with ourselves and view social, political, and religious frailties while connecting with the characters and reflecting on the deeper meaning set behind them and how they apply to our lives. This play allows provides us the opportunity to come clean about our perception of others and the reality of the world we live in. This play exemplified a lot of victims, and even victims of circumstance, and made you acknowledge the depth behind the actions of others and that there is a reason people act a certain way or do certain things and a lot of it comes from their circumstance in life. We also tend to glorify what is supposed to be pure, even when we know of its corruption and faulty actions and we turn a blind eye rather than fighting to resolve the underlying issue, simply because its delicate.