READING RESPONSE 1
My impression of epic theatre is one that shows more to the audiencethan what is being acted on stage. I perceive it to be a theatrecrafted to communicate different works that have moral, political, aswell as social factors that affect the characters in the mosteffective ways. The theatre also creates an impression that it is themost outstanding work of art on its own enabling it handle all theother works of art performed on its stage.
I expect it to be like a bridge that allows the audience to crossfrom the front stage showing the actual performances and get to theback stage where they understand the subject matter that has inspiredthe performance on stage. The imaginary wall that exists between theactors and audience is broken and the audience are no longerobservers but active members of a theatrical experience. As such, theaudience are constantly kept thinking about the actions on stagewithout switching off due to different emotions.
Epic theatre does interest me for its effectiveness in distancing anaudience from being emotionally involved in the acts and at the sametime being perceptive to the themes in the acts. For instance, thetheatre is able to employ distancing devices and have the audienceconsider the meaning of a given parable by exploring the differentviewpoints to a given argument presented in an act.
According to Brecht, “The spectator was no longer in any wayallowed to submit to an experience uncritically (and withoutpractical consequences) by means of simple empathy with thecharacters in a play.” How do the following five theatrical devicesprevent spectators from submitting to experiences uncritically bymeans of simple empathy with the characters in a play?
Coming out of role
Speaking the stage directions
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