How the Key Characters change as the play progresses? How do their relationship progress?
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Amish Gandhi 09.10.2001 How the Key Characters change as the play progresses? How does their relationship progress? "You are?-Frank What am I?-Rita FRANK (looking for administration pictures) Now you are?-Frank I'm a what?-Rita FRANK LOOKS UP AND THEN RETURNS TO THE PAPERS..." This is the start of the relationship, which leads to the witty yet serious story of two opposites, written by Willy Russell. The play "Educating Rita" depicts the integration of two societies, with Rita who is a dissatisfied hairdresser, who comes to Frank (a middle-aged tutor), in search of educational enlightenment. Rita enters the play as a typical young, working class girl, with a deep desire to change her life. Not to merely make new friends, or become educated, she wants to leave most of her entire past life behind and make a completely fresh start. Rita explains that before she just carried on with life and if anything was getting too much of the same, she would just go out and buy another dress. She has now realised however, that she is twenty-six years old, married and yet has no real meaning to her life. In an effort to change herself she has enrolled in an English literature course and promised herself that she will not buy a new dress until she passes her first exam. Rita is prepared to do anything to reach her goal to therefore enhance her social status. She has changed her name to Rita (from Susan) in an effort to be acknowledged as a different person and to be likened to her idol, Rita Mae Brown. This demonstrates that she has clear goals. Her admiration for Rita Mae Brown leads her to read the works of her favourite author, for example, Rubyfruit Jungle. " I'm not a Susan no more. I've called meself Rita... ...Y'know, Rita Mae Brown who wrote Rubyfruit Jungle" When Rita first meets Frank she automatically assumes a deep admiration for him.
Frank is afraid of her changing and tries to persuade her not to do so. "I don't know that I want a to teach you... ...What you already have is valuable" Yet Rita will not listen, she is now obsessed to becoming what she calls a "proper student". To Franks words she responds with: "Valuable? What's valuable?... But don't you realise I want to change!" Rita changes in that instance and shows no sign of changing back. While the learning stage, Frank undergoes some changes too. He has become more outgoing and sees there are better things to do than drink. He also turns to be more open and accepting with things. For example when Rita gave in her meagre essays he may have before been very annoyed or not bothered, but instead he does his job for a change and helps her in an understanding way. Another example is when Rita took him too an amateurs play which he would not have done ever before. Let alone going out to a place without drink, the play is done by amateurs is Frank's immediate thought. Reluctantly he is dragged at the start but than goes willing. "Oh y' an awful snob, aren't y'?" -Rita "All right-come on" -Frank Later on it is him who is inviting Rita to go out, at a dinner party. Rita then goes to a summer school where she continues with her studies and her change. When she comes back it seem s that both the characters have changed. Rita has obviously changed but so has Frank. At the start of Act 2 Scene 1 Rita comes in as new person with hardly a trace of Rita in Act 1. For one thing she comes in wearing new clothes, which are second hand, so she is keeping to her promise of not getting a new dress. Also when she gives a brief description of her holidays it is easy to tell that she had changed.
to tell him that but then she finds out that he is moving to Australia for two years because of his drink problems. She is shocked about this and is left with options. Go and live with Frank in Australia, go with Tiger and his friends or go to her mothers and/or have a baby. During the whole ordeal the relationship between the two main characters fluctuate in friendship. Rita ends up in her same situation at the start of the play but is now educated. She hasn't really made any new friends except for Frank, Trish one could say doesn't look up to no more and Tiger she said: "He's bit of a Wanker really" So she has not ended up with much. As for Frank he like Rita earned some life experience and learnt some skills in life like understanding, caring and persistence. What is significant about this play about a relationship between two characters did so well and received many awards. The key to this two-hander play without soliquys is that life experience was put in. It wasn't just a play but also an autobiography in a way. Willy Russell who wrote it started off as a hairdresser seeking an education in English Literature. He became a student than a writer. One could say that he knew how hard it was to understand criticism well and keep in touch with life; this is how the play of an epic struggle for Rita to seek an education was so detailed elegantly. The play ends with Frank giving Rita a new dress signifying a new educated woman. As the two part their separate ways, it is applicable to say that they will never forget their time together. One could argue that they loved each other, but than one could say that they simply admired each other and only loved their different backgrounds. As Shakespeare wrote in a play "It is better to have loved and lost, than to have never loved at all"
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