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How does Shakespeare create an atmosphere in act 1 scene 5? The masked ball of Romeo and Juliet.

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Introduction

How does Shakespeare create an atmosphere in act 1 scene 5? The masked ball of Romeo and Juliet. Scott Elliott 11k Act 1 scene 5 of 'Romeo and Juliet' is a pivotal scene in the play. The audience are exited because they are eagerly awaiting the meeting of the two young lovers which has been told to them in the prolog Romeo Montague and Juliet Capulet. In addition the audience is waiting to see how the relationship will develop between the two. The love story aspect of the play appeals to all especially the romantic type and whilst the feud between the two families fuels the excitement in the play for people who like action. This has all been told to the audience in the prolog at the beginning to give them an insight in what is to happen. The atmosphere in Verona is fair and quite until a recent fight in the square between the two families started by servants that were encouraged by Tybalt, creates and confirms the situation to be volatile. Also the prince has issued a death sentence on anyone who breaks the peace 'Your lives shall pay the forfeit of the peace' this adds more atmosphere to the play and also anticipation among the audience and it also like a spark to the atmosphere which is created. ...read more.

Middle

Romeo decides to go to the masked ball and the audience is experiencing a range of emotions prior to the ball so expectations are in high order. Shakespeare sets act 1 scene 5 in the Capulet's opulent and luxurious home. At the start of the scene details about the masked ball are given to create atmosphere by using different effects on stage. Lord Capulet indicates the happy lighted mood early in this scene by saying, 'More lights, you knaves! And turn the tables up, and quench the fire, the room is going to hot' In lines 16 - 40 we are introduced to the Capulet household, who wearing glamorous, rich costumes to impress the audience walk on stage. Immediately the audience attempt to pick out Juliet who will stand out as the young beauty in the crowd, but their attention will be diverted to Lord Capulet and his conversation. Lord Capulet is joining and welcoming his guests, which eases the peace of the scene. Lord Capulet is nostalgic, comfortable and very gossipy. Lord Capulet is the caring host, determined to ensure that all his guests are happy. With music and lights this generosity and warmth pulls the audience into a warm and friendly mood and this makes them feel what it is like. ...read more.

Conclusion

In lines 53 - 91 there is a change in mood compared to the peaceful mood we saw previously. Tybalt has spotted Romeo and goes to Lord Capulet to tell him of the insult, Tybalt talks about Romeo calling him 'a villain', 'a slave' this creates tension and the audience become fearful for Romeo and his party and a fear that the romance may end so quick with Tybalt's aggressive language, 'Fetch me my rapier' highlighting the tension even further. Tybalt uses derogatory terms like 'slave' and 'villain' this shows Tybalt's anger and rage towards Romeo and the presence of Montague's in the ball. Tybalt sees the worst and assumes that Romeo is there to start trouble: 'To fleer and scorn at out solemnity' Lord Capulet speaks generously of Romeo and raises Romeo in the eyes of the audience. Capulet then uses more influential language that shows his determination to keep the peace and does not want to blemish the ball. Tension, the audience is riveted to see if Tybalt will obey (anticipation) 'I'll not endure him' Capulet balances his role of a general host whilst reprimanding Tybalt. In lines 92 - 100 Romeo and Juliet meet again. They speak in sonnet form, which emphasizes and articulates their devotion for each other. At this stage of the scene Romeo puts Juliet a pedestal by using religious imagery. He describes his lips as 'two blushing pilgrims'. ...read more.

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