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Review of GCSE play

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Evaluation Phase After watching the 2007 GCSE drama performances, students were asked to choose a play to evaluate. I chose a play called Life is a Tempest; this was because I enjoyed the way the actors explored how the stories of Shakespeare can parallel reality. I also liked how the props and costumes in this play were minimalistic in contrast to the complex storyline and dialogue. Life as a Tempest opened with a storm - literally; flashing lights represented the bad weather faced by a royal party. Black wooden blocks were the ship carrying King Alonso and his company on their way to Africa. As the master of the boat tries to keep it afloat, Alonso's men, Antonio and Sebastian come up on deck to give orders. They stand on the blocks - higher than everyone else underlining their authority, the scene ends in argument, with Gonzalo remaining the only calm member of the crew while the ship is splitting in half. ...read more.


In the end, things straighten out for Joe and his son. James and Mary become a couple once more with James turning out to be more vibrant and passionate because of their reunion. The play ends with a scene from Macbeth and the ghost of Banquo joins them at a banquet wearing a white shirt, contrasting with everyone else wearing black. As he is sitting there, with everyone else oblivious to him, blood begins to trickle out of his mouth and down his shirt, stressing that he is dead. This technique is effective in that it shocks the audience, providing a memorable conclusion. In this piece, there were seven actors altogether; however they each played multiple roles. An example of this was a student named Tom playing Gonzalo from The Tempest also playing an older version of another character and James' best friend earlier in the story. Despite the doubling, tripling and even quadrupling of characters, the changes were clear to the audience because of the varieties of language used. ...read more.


There were also monologues, for example Mary's after James chose to end their relationship. Another instance where someone was talking solely to the audience was when James read a letter from Mary. This allowed variation but was also successful in that we were able to see the instant emotion expressed by the recipient. The main theme of Life is a Tempest was sacrifice. Joe surrenders his job, despite it being his only source income because of the harsh conditions his boss was setting. In turn, his boss fired his best worker because he wasn't complying with the unrealistic deadlines he was setting. Also, Joe's son- James sacrificed his girlfriend because of all that was going on in his life, despite still loving her. In Conclusion, I enjoyed this play immensely due to the labyrinthine storyline and the way it contrasted to the simple lights, costumes and props. I particularly liked the way they incorporated the work of Shakespeare into the plot and how it complimented the events happening in present time. ?? ?? ?? ?? UNIT TWO COURSEWORK- Evaluation Phase Word Count: 995 Page | 1 ...read more.

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