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Performance Evaluation - On 20th May 2009, I saw Theatre 101s performance of their self written play Star Crossed Lovers from Verona. It is a comedy based on the works of William Shakespeare

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Introduction

Evaluation - "Star Crossed Lovers from Verona" On 20th May 2009, I saw Theatre 101's performance of their self written play "Star Crossed Lovers from Verona". It is a comedy based on the works of William Shakespeare written in the style of an Elizabethan Drama and Commedia Dell'Arte and is about three different stories of love and betrayal taken from "Romeo & Juliet", "Much Ado about Nothing" and "The Taming of the Shrew". The story focused around two lovers who wished to be married with the disapproval of two elders who are trying to prevent them; this is a typical Comedia Dell'Arte plot. The play made me consider these issues of love and betrayal and question how funny love can really be. The director showed this through a lot of comedic movement. There were also issues concerning old age and how when two people are in love, nothing can separate them no matter what their age. It made me question why the elders were trying to stop the innmorati from getting married and how that in today's society this still happens. This was the basic stage layout. The play was performed in an amphitheatre style area. The actors made exits from both sides and sometimes moved all the way round the back of the stage to re-enter. ...read more.

Middle

He began trying to make himself seen all the time, walking in large strides and taking up a lot of space on the stage. These movements suggested he was a show off and made himself appear strong which is far from his true character. His voice was also quite loud and overpowering in order to get the most attention. When revealed as the villain, he tries to escape and is kicked to the ground which shows to the audience he is in fact a coward and inferior to everyone else. The (unimpressive) Spanish accent had disappeared as the director wanted to show he was also a total fraud. The masks are a large part of Comedia Dell'Arte; they represent the characters and show their emotions through how they are made. Dottore wore a mask with an extremely long nose which shows stupidity and the nose was at the centre of his movements which were much exaggerated with little control. The lovers, Isabella and Flavio, wore white masks with rosy cheeks which showed their innocence and purity. The older characters had darker masks which were more shrivelled up. Arcchelino had a pointed nose to suggest a more devious personality. When Pantalone was being foolish, his mask changed to something clown-like; white with a large red nose which gave the impression he was being ridiculous in his actions. ...read more.

Conclusion

Pantalone's physicality changed along with his voice when he was mocking and pretending to be an old lady; it was high pitched and quieter compared to when he was the arrogant rich man. Isabella had an annoyingly high pitched voice that was very girly and when she was cross, her voice was more piercing and precise which showed she had mood swings and always wanted to get her own way. Although the play was slightly hard to understand, the audience could relate to the issues addressed in it; Shakespeare was very good at getting these messages across and Commedia Dell'Arte is an excellent style of theatre for comedy and improvisation. I found that the play, at times, lost concentration from the audience. It was quite a young audience and it might have suited the age range if the play was more updated. On the other hand, that would have ruined the traditional style of theatre it was being performed in. The atmosphere was great on the night; a moment that stuck in my mind was when the two elders snuggled up in the woods and made love; it was a simple, innocent piece of humour and the noises coming from a cast member in the audience (a Brechtian style technique) were quite random! ?? ?? ?? ?? Joshua Pemberton ...read more.

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