The Spatial Experience
In most theatres I prefer to be the middle in order to fully be able to see the stage. However, I sat in the back right part of theatre. I honestly would have preferred another location, but it did not impede on my ability to enjoy the play. When the lights dimmed, I began to feel more at ease, and honestly it began feel more like an actual enjoyable event rather than an assignment. When the audience silenced, it truly felt as if the performance what being taken seriously. The size of the auditorium made be feel as if I was in an authentic theatre. I could feel the authenticity of the actors, it piqued both my curiosity and enthusiasm. In regards to the Good Life, a theatre is one of those places where fundamental meaning can be found. Theatres are home to artistic expression, sometimes capable of changing world views. For some, theatres are where one finds the Good Life or at least find art essential to the Good Life.
The Social Experiance
I did not attend the performance with any friends; I was surrounded by complete strangers. It was not particularly comfortable. I sat where the usher told me to, which luckily was the seat closest to the aisle. As the performance went on, this became more and more insignificant. I realized that although it would have been more comfortable and enjoyable to see the play with friends, I also would not have paid as much attention to the performance. Shared experiences are what connect people in their fulfillment of the Good Life. Empathy and relatable experiences are what allow individuals to explore and communicate what it means to search and find the Good Life.
The Cultural and Intellectual Experience
This is difficult to explain broadly. I could apply how the play affected my understanding of various cultures - American culture, theatre culture, college culture, art in general. What I found applicable to all of these cultures was one the main messages of the play. This message particularly stood to me above the rest. We aim to suppress and cover corruption and inadequacies rather than address and confront them, which only leads to atrophy. Before the play, I knew of the issues of child labor and the history of misconduct in the priesthood. However it is easy to separate factual history and emotion understanding. I suppose after the performance, especially with the series of events that occurred towards the end, I felt the significance of what those events had in real life. These very events happened to actual people, and the performance reminded me of that.
The Emotional Experience
The Divine: A Play for Sarah Bernhardt brought up a lot of subjects that we, in some ways, have forgotten. In both Canada and the United States child labor, as it was depicted in the play is not prevalent in modern day. The importance of the Church and its political hold is not as great in these two countries. (However, in many parts of the globe this still holds true.) The performance was a reminder that cover ups, whether they are societal or individual, are destructive. It was a notice to the audience to realize that this is a chance to start over from here on out. An opportunity for catharsis. No, society may never be clean of its "sins" or "impurities". However, this does not mean not individuals should not make an effort to eradicate many of the egregious dilemmas present in global society. Doing good and functioning in society are what makes the Good Life possible.