Friday, February 7, 2014
Out of the plays that we have read so far, I think that we should strongly consider performing Plautus’s Amphritruo. Firstly, I believe that the plot has the right amount of complexity and humor for a modern audience. It also features concepts that are relatable to a modern audience without too much background explanation of Greek culture. Zeus and his man-whore ways, a jealous husband, and a confused slave can be taken at face value, whereas with other plays we might have to find ways to explain the intricacy of Greek adoption, the practice of exposing etc. Also this plot is a bit more intricate that Pseudolus and personally I think it has a better sense of pacing and timing.
I am far more inclined to advocate a comedy of this nature as an option for our performance, than a tragedy. I think that with a comedy, given our collective lack of experience staging Greek plays and putting on productions as students, we would have a higher chance of a quality performance. Greek tragedies require serious acting chops and though we have discussed casting outside of our class…casting can be a bit of a mixed bag (especially near the end of the semester when a lot of BYU’s plays occupy the actors)… and the thought of either casting for or performing in a Greek tragedy is rather daunting to me. Plus, I’ve watched a few Greek Tragedy performances, and though they were amazing…they were also definitely downers. People love to laugh and a Greek comedy might be a bit easier to swallow for our audience.
I think that I would prefer to do one play in its entirety, as opposed to scenes. This way, the audience can follow the arch of the characters and the storyline without constantly having to switch gears. Also we, as a class, would be able to better explore one piece as opposed to having to juggle different snippets of plays.
Also, I really enjoyed Ansel and Christopher’s cold reading of Amphitrio and firmly believe that if we all opted to perform in the play, that there would be enough characters that suit us and our abilities. This play really has some funny moments and a lot of opportunity for great blocking. There is a lot of ways that we could stage physical humor to make the dialogue come alive. As for dress, I prefer costumes over stage blacks. I think that costumes help with characterization for actors and improve the atmosphere of the play for the audience. In terms of location, so far I am liking the JKB stage that we have reserved, especially because it seems as though they are willing to give us ample rehearsal time which is a huge plus. I think that our class is really well suited to put on an awesome production of Amphitruo and I strongly encourage you all to consider it.