Cultural Opportunity - The Tempest

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Where I stayed
Ewing Manor

Flag of United States  , Illinois
Thursday, July 22, 2010

For my play cultural opportunity, I chose to see The Tempest, which was written by Shakespeare. I chose this play because some of the class was going, and it seemed like a good chance to fulfill this cultural opportunity. Also, although I have heard about the Shakespeare Festival, I had never gone to it and was curious as to what it would be like. One of my favorite parts of the experience was the setting. In the days of Shakespeare, his plays were performed on outdoor stages. The Tempest was also performed on an outdoor stage, and I think they did this in order to recreate how it would feel to watch a Shakespeare play about five hundred years ago. I've always had an interest in history, so for me, being able to imagine watching one of Shakespeare’s plays during his time was exciting. The atmosphere was very relaxed; the people in the crowd were drinking wine or eating ice cream and just enjoying the evening. I had never gone to an outdoor or a Shakespeare play, so I am glad that I went.

The stage remained the same during the entire play; there were no scene changes. Therefore I was impressed with how the actors were able to use that space they were given and make the audience believe that they were where the plot took them, whether that was a ship, a beach, or the home of a sorcerer. I thought that the actors did a fantastic job and they all portrayed their characters really well. I also really liked their costumes. One of the characters in the play was the spirit Ariel, and he had amazing blue body paint on. The actor portraying Ariel also did an awesome job with his body movements. None of the actors ever slacked with their facial expressions either. From the start to finish of their time on the stage, they were completely in character. This was helpful to me, because even during the times when I couldn’t quite understand the language of Shakespeare, I still could understand what was going on because of the good performance of the actors.

Overall, it was a really good experience, because I saw something I never had seen before, and it was also just simply entertaining.
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