I’m going to be staying with the European theme. Last year I explored Greek and this year I will work with Brecht.
Brecht is anti free enterprise. He is more of a communist and socialist. He believes we allow ourselves to be bought and sold as people. Giving ourselves to the industry of power. Uses historical events and people.
“Brecht created an influential theory of theatre—the epic theatre—that proposed that a play should not cause the spectator to identify emotionally with the characters or action before him or her, but should instead provoke rational self-reflection and a critical view of the action on the stage. Brecht thought that the experience of a climactic catharsis of emotion left an audience complacent. Instead, he wanted his audiences to adopt a critical perspective in order to recognise social injustice and exploitation and to be moved to go forth from the theatre and effect change in the world outside. For this purpose, Brecht employed the use of techniques that remind the spectator that the play is a representation of reality and not reality itself. By highlighting the constructed nature of the theatrical event, Brecht hoped to communicate that the audience’s reality was equally constructed and, as such, was changeable.
One of Brecht’s most important principles was what he called the Verfremdungseffekt (translated as “defamiliarization effect,” “distancing effect,” or “estrangement effect,” and often mistranslated as “alienation effect”). This involved, Brecht wrote, “stripping the event of its self-evident, familiar, obvious quality and creating a sense of astonishment and curiosity about them.” To this end, Brecht employed techniques such as the actor’s direct address to the audience, harsh and bright stage lighting, the use of songs to interrupt the action, explanatory placards, and, in rehearsals, the transposition of text to the third person or past tense, and speaking the stage directions out loud.”
–Beginning information to think about. From Wikipedia
Plays I could use:
Mother Courage and her Children — woman who sells goods to the soldiers. Soldiers take her child into the army and he dies.
Chalk Circle — two women both claim the same child. Written with long monologues.