The Devine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt By:makenzie muley


"Architect’s Newspaper Highlights University of Florida Reitz Union." Architect's Newspaper Highlights University of Florida Reitz Union | Cannon Design. N.p., n.d. Web. 06 Feb. 2017.

As I walked up through the Reitz Union and up the stairs, I saw the entrance to Constans theatre, and immediately got excited. The theatre being tucked away and sort of hidden kind of gave it a mysterious affect. I had been in the Reitz many times before but had never really noticed it until now. It was intriguing to see where all these amazing plays had been performed before. After swiping my ID i couldn't contain my excitement to watch the amazing play. Once entering the auditorium I was a little overwhelmed because there were so many different seats to choose from. I took my time to pick out the perfect seat so that I could truly experience the play in the best way possible. Since I enjoy looking at the stage from above, I chose to sit in the upper middle so that way I would be able to absorb all aspects of the play. In my past I have experienced many different plays since my sister was very involved in theatre, so I knew I would be able to get the most out of my experience. The auditorium was the perfect size as it was not too big, nor too small. It was the perfect size theatre in my opinion, so even in the back I was not too close or too far from the stage. As the lights started to dim and the audience became quiet, I noticed all the other people around me were also from my good life class. Sharing such an amazing experience was something I'll always remember being a part of. Being exposed to this play made me realize that growing and trying new things helps you to realize what the "good life" means because you discover what you enjoy and what gets you excited to wake up every morning.


I was fortunate enough to attend this performance with two friends, but they were busy taking pictures of other parts of the theatre. I have known them both for a very long time so it was cool to be able to experience this together. It was very beneficial to have others with me during the play because we were able to discuss different scenes, characters, and plots. Since we each had different perspectives we were able to see different thoughts about the play. In order to be prepared we read the background of "The Devine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt", and reviewed the rubric in order to have an understanding of what we were about to watch. While taking pictures in the auditorium, we made friends with other good life students, who were strangers at first. By the end of the play we became very close as we all worked together to comprehend the play and fulfill our good life requirements. It was easy to bond with others around me because we all had the same goal and responsibilities. I felt connected to the other good life students and it gave us a sense of unity since we we were all there for the same reason. Of course there were people who probably wanted to go just to get the assignment over, and those who thoroughly enjoyed the play, however no matter their intentions, everyone respectfully watched the play and connected previously learned knowledge to the content of the play. Although everyones opinions on the play will differ, in a way that represents the good life. Just like everyone's opinions on the play will be different, everyones opinions on the good life will also be different.


I wasn't too sure what to expect before seeing "The Devine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt", because I wasn't very knowledgable about the subject matter. However, through the course the good life, I have constantly been learning about how everyone has different opinions on life based on a variety of reasons. In this play, Talbot and Michaud are from opposing social classes and have many different views on life from art to religion. This is relatable because different things make them happy and they both are seminarians for different reasons. Talbot is not very wealthy and tries to make something of himself by entering the seminary, where Michaud comes from a wealthy background, making him intrigued by Talbots views and way of life. Through the controversy of Sarah Bernhardt, the two are able to learn more about each other and challenge the status quo. At this time it was a big deal to challenge the norms of society because Quebec City was very set in their ways, but Sarah Bernhardt challenged that, making the city very nervous for her to perform. I did not know that this play would highlight such a controversial subject, but I found it interesting how it was presented in the play.The performance changed my views as it showed that different social classes need to be banned and that classifications don't mean anything. It showed me that those in power can be challenged and equality was a major issue back in the 1900's, and still is something we're fighting for today. I personally think I relate to this in my own life as currently there are a lot of protests and a lot of determination to have equality. Many people want to get rid of social classes and are bringing awareness to issues that have caused separation in the past. Overall, this play brought to my attention how even though people come from different backgrounds and might have different beliefs, it takes one event to change someone's outlook and perspectives, just like how ones idea of "the good life" constantly changes with new experiences and events that take place in ones life.


To achieve the good life it is important to remember that it doesn't matter what you have, but what you learn. And with what you learn, how you apply it to one's everyday life. Despite one's background it is truly one's inner self that is reflected through personal choices. According to Dr. Pegan, the theatre is a place where sensitive subjects, which usually aren't discussed can be openly distinguished. The Greek word "Katharsis" translates to "coming clean" which can be seen in "The Divine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt", by the characters opening up about their true desires and seeing how art still has a large influence in our lives. The play represents learning that the idea of different social classes is freely presented and discussed in a way, which the classes are contrasted. The play itself challenges these ideas and emphasizes the significance of staying true to one's personal values when dealing with personal decisions of man, while simultaneously being capable of working with others in order to achieve a common goal.


Created with images by gosheshe - "curtain"

Made with Adobe Slate

Make your words and images move.

Get Slate

Report Abuse

If you feel that this video content violates the Adobe Terms of Use, you may report this content by filling out this quick form.

To report a Copyright Violation, please follow Section 17 in the Terms of Use.