Sunday, August 18, 2019
The Short Story Of Night - A C :: essays research papers
"The Short History Of Night" by John Mighton fervently seeks to expound upon the idea that societal disorder will eventually affect all levels of society despite any purposeful attempts to be detached, whether physically, using status or otherwise. Throughout many facets of the play this thought is effectively echoed, more particularly in the areas of set design, sound and light design, and character development. The utilization of levels in the set design is sensibly used in what I believe, a twofold purpose. First, and more obviously, to create various physical levels on stage with the use of the raised circular portion as in the scene with Kepler and his soon-to-be wife sitting on a hill awaiting his "prophesied" comet or with the depiction of Tycho's observatory. On the other hand, this rise in physical level also produces a platform for a higher level of observation or rationale. Kepler's wife, while standing on this upper level, would begin to ponder and question her husband on various topics possibly beyond her character's intelligence level as inferred by her husband's response. It is ironic that she is also placed at this level as she is "raving" during her interrogation on her involvement with witchcraft. Therefore, following the same train of thought, the use of this arrangement suggests that her examiners, namely the Inquisitor, are merely acting out of ignoran ce. Most tangible however, is the complete black appearance of the set that helps considerably to establish the notion that the play is a representation of place in a period of discord. The darkness of the set creates a sense of eerieness and obscurity that draws the audience into the social upheaval of this period. More interestingly, over the course of the play this "blackness" extends into the allusion of the lurking evils of the society and its possible infiltration at any time on the unsuspecting. Working in conjunction with the set, to completely produce the aforementioned effect, is the sound and lighting design. Strikingly impressive, is the use of shadows to create scenes and evoke mood, as with the shadow representation of the forest creating the setting and generating a harrowing atmosphere -- perfect for Kepler's secret journey to Tycho's observatory. The sound and music successfully accentuate the growing conflict in the play with the extensive use of tension chords, particularly during the arrival of the Inquisitor and the scene changes, creating dissonant, chaotic-sounding tones.