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“Into the Woods”
“Into the Woods was simply an amazing theatrical performance!
The play combined suspense ,excitement, and fascinatingly realistic set design to captivate the audience. Half way through this play I found myself and my classmates thinking “Wow! What a play! How could anyone dream up such a crazy idea and turn it into a production?” I think this is the first time that I have been taken to this level of astonishment. A kind where it just grabs you and throws you. And it knocks the wind out of you! Steven Sondheim, creator of the play, had obviously mastered the skills needed to make me say this. His style was was like a vinegar in the tomato sauce, a present yet unidentifiable hint, which reminds you of the crafter’s care. Even if you could not quite grasp it it was there. Something that made it stand out. His good sense of humor and wit and his superior plot development were blended subtly so that it wasn’t to conglomerate. But most importantly, his use of well known characters which made the audience feel as though their family was up on !
stage. The characters were extremely realistic and were an ideal image of the thoughts they seemed to “discharge”.
The catalyst of the plot were the main characters which were the baker and his wife, Jack, the witch, Red Riding Hood, the wolf and Cinderella were all major. It is this kind of interdependency that adds so much to this play. It was fascinating to me how much relied upon each character’s actions. There was more of a co-operative “essence” about this play than most. The minor characters in this play( the two princes, the giantess, Rapunzel, Snow White, Sleeping Beauty, and the baker’s father) were also well done, which I have found in other plays to be “half rate” or quickly whipped up to add a twist which really wasn’t a twist at all, but something everybody knew was going to happen to a certain extent. But this thing had been thought about and thought about until it was so there was hardly any way to improve upon it without actually being there with Rapunzel and the baker. There was a sense of excitement with every word and action of the characters that was really refreshin!
g to me. When discussing dynamics of this play, I would like to type on for ages, since this play was practically the definition of dynamic!
All of the characters in the play were slightly dynamic, because of the fact that the existence of this play is based on change. But the most apparent dynamic characters of the play were Red Riding Hood, because of how she seemingly made a transformation from little girl, who frequently was taken advantage of, to a mature young woman who could fend for herself, Cinderella, because of how at first all she dreamt of was marrying a prince(stereotypical behavior of the time) and then turned into someone who would give anything to avoid a prince, and Jack, because he also had a slight gain of wisdom through the story.
This play was also well rounded, because of the fact that we had all heard the classic stories of the characters. This gave us a sort of distorted insight into the play which actually led to bewilderment( we expected things from the stories to keep happening in the play). But in my belief, the play’s characters were all rounded except for the newly introduced, which were the baker’s Father and the giantess. However, when you take someone who just hasn’t learned a thing about fairy tales and let them watch the
play, the only really round characters are the baker, his wife, The witch and Cinderella.
Techniques of the characters were mainly centered around humor.
Most of the actions of the characters left me laughing yet I would be puzzled at what they did. This was also something the characters focused on. The play almost had a “unsobering” effect on the audience, and you really had to pay attention to what was going on. The confusion, I see, as planned precisely by some strategic tycoon who was trained to accomplish a task at all costs. Steven Sondheim knew what he was doing and also knew that he
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