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Drama Assignment: Our Day Out by Willy Russell

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Drama Assignment: Our Day Out by Willy Russell Scene 35 is the climax of the play, "Our Day Out". How does Willy Russell create dramatic tension in this scene? Consider characters, actions, use of situation, the social message of the play and how an audience might create today? Our Day Out is a play written by the playwright Willy Russell in 1977,which was set in Liverpool and of which was originally for a televised drama. Willy Russell's popular television play is a witty, fast-moving drama piece. The outline of the plot is that the 'progress class' is on a trip to Wales where liberal Mrs Kay and strict Mr Briggs have completely different ideas about how the day should be organised. Our Day Out follows a school trip from an inner-city school to the zoo and the seaside, and from this the plot of the drama deepens and develops into a highly enjoyable and educational experience for the reader. Many of Russell's plays are based around some of his own personal experiences, and this history is very true of Our Day Out as its roots are firmly planted in Russell's experiences at Shorefields Comprehensive School where he taught from 1973-4. It was in that year were Russell accompanied the teacher of the remedial department on a trip she ran to Conway castle and zoo for the children. ...read more.


Just five seconds, one...two...three...four...I'm warning you,five!" he does this to do this to get carol to move from the cliff. This makes the scene tense at first, as it does not give a close and understanding relationship between the two characters. The atmosphere is as tense and exciting as the setting. This is the climax of the play as it's the scene where Mr Briggs relaxes and becomes more close to his pupil, his image changed from bad to good. The facing up to reality that Mr Briggs does is heightened by the real cliff-hanger taking place here and carols willingness to risk her life rather than leave this wonderful place is made sympathetic rather then pathetic. This is shown as the two characters start to form a relationship, an understanding " carol lifts her hand to his. She slips. Briggs grabs out quickly and managers to pull her to him. Briggs wraps his arms around hers." This scene is the most important scene of the whole play. It is so tense, Willy Russell managers to build up the tension by putting the characters in a very difficult situation; the physical danger that carol is in is a really big aspect as it builds up the tension. The words that he uses show this, " she moves to the edge of the cliff. ...read more.


Personally this is how the play kept my interest, plus as it was really humorous, it kept me laughing and involved more, the cheeky kids made my interest keep focussed onto the play, and it makes the play become light hearted even though it involves issues that are not. For example, in scene six; leaving the city, when children are smoking and Andrews gets caught, he makes the situation (underage smoking) which is serious, funny, he says that his dad beats him when he gets home, this arises another serious situation; child abuse, the teacher asks is it because you smoke which makes your dad hit you, he replies in a cheeky sense, "sir, no sir, because I won't give him one". This is a perfect example in how Willy turns a serious situation become light hearted, and funny. These are the aspects which kept me interested and also how I seemed to find my self feeling sorry for the characters as there life was very chaotic, and badly run. I felt connected with them, and was interested to see how a normal day would be for these characters and how I would compare it to my day, I found its very different seeing to how underprivileged the children are. Its clear to see that Willy's serious theme arises through humour. The above aspects for me, is how "Our day out" builds ups tension and conflict very convincingly. ...read more.

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