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How willy russel conveys chosen themes

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20th Century Drama Coursework: How Does Willy Russell Use the Story of the Johnston Twins to Convey His Chosen Themes in Blood Brothers? 'Blood Brothers' is a play that was written by Willy Russell. First performed in Liverpool in 1982, it was later adapted to become a musical before becoming a worldwide hit. The plot concerns two brothers separated at birth due to their real mother's lack of money. They become close friends later in life, unknowing of their relation. The play ends with tragedy when both brothers are killed in a freak accident due to a breakdown of friendship over a love interest. There are multiple themes or alternative meanings running alongside the main plot of the play. Using such a multitude of themes is a brilliant method for getting in touch with more individual readers and building up a greater audience who appreciate the play at may different levels. The added meanings also add richness and feeling to the story of the Johnston twins without overcomplicating it. The two most important themes in Willy Russell's blood brothers I feel were the comparisons between the upper and lower British social classes, there were a ...read more.


These differences in the twin's conduct are apparent to me from characters behaviour and dialogue in the play, for example, where Edward says "You're a fuckoff." We know from before that "Fuck off" is a term used by Mickey and when Edward mimics him, he misinterprets the meaning having never been exposed to swearing in his upbringing. Mickey on the other hand was not knowing what a dictionary was when referred to by Eddy, he says "It's a err... Thingy isn't it?" to make his background seem more obvious on stage I would imagine that his character would often be dressed in scruffy, soiled clothing. Throughout Blood Brothers readers are constantly aware of how anxious Mrs Johnstone and to a lesser extent Mrs Lyons are about their twins finding out their secret. The two women are constantly worried of what will come of their "sons". Superstitions are constantly driving them to despair as they fear that the twins will die at the moment they discover they are real brothers. Everything in their power is done to stop the imminent from happening, right down to superstitions like not leaving new shoes on the table. ...read more.


When they are play fighting as children they are always re-assuring each other that "If ya' count from one to ten, you can get back up off the floor again" when any of the children were playing dead. In my opinion, it was the principal objective of Willy Russell to portray both class and Superstition in Blood Brothers. In the closing scene of the play where both twins lie dead in a bloody massacre, the narrator sings the verse "And do we blame superstition for what came to pass... Or could it be what we, the English have come to know as class?" To me, this is the line that opens up this discussion and so it is what I have based my conclusion on. By questioning it's relevance, the text in this quote also discourages people from thinking that the main meaning of the musical is superstition. It was an ingenious and unique idea to base a tragedy on upbringing and is well accomplished one at that. Willy Russell completed this possibly by assuming that people were going to understand the issues associated with life in a lower class family, and then taking them on the journey to adulthood with both twins to further elaborate. This links the plot with the main theme. ...read more.

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