Friday, April 11, 2008

Play as Narrative

I discovered a copy of Pygmalion by G.B. Shaw on my bookshelf. I have not looked at it in quite some time. My Fair Lady (both the movie and the Broadway and West End musical) was based on this play. As I was reading the play, the introductory notes to each act caught my attention. These introductory notes set the stage (no pun intended) for each act. Shaw describes in great detail the appearance of Henry Higgins' elocution room from the color of the room to the instruments on his desk. These introductory notes are not spoken by the actors, but they are used by the director and the set director to construct a stage set that conveys what the play is about. The intro notes tell the story of the play by giving details of each of the character's personalities. Before we read an act of the play, we have a specific idea of what will happen when the characters start talking to each other.

The above excerpt is from:

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