Review, Pages 4 (861 words)
Within this essay I am going to discuss two plays I have studied during the course so far. The first play is “Billy Liar” by Keith Waterhouse. The second play is “Blue Remembered Hills” By Dennis Potter. The first play “Billy Liar” is set in the late 1950’s early 1960’s. The play has many different genres, the play shows elements of a kitchen sink drama; it also has elements of black comedy even though of the scenes are lighthearted it also has a tragic ending.
“Billy Liar” tells the story of a young man from a lower middle class family called Billy who has become bored with his life as an undertaker. He decides to make up stories to make his life more interesting than it is, he even ends up with three girlfriends at the same time, At the end of the play Billy has the chance to go off with the girl he loves to start a new life, he decides not to go, this makes the ending of the play very sad and we wonder if Billy will ever change.
In the play “Billy Liar” I played Alice.
I tried to play Alice’s character with a lot of energy, to achieve this I would rush around the stage collecting tea things and rushing off stage as if going to the kitchen I also used the space provided, Alice has a broad North Yorkshire accent so I used my voice to achieve this. This role is very different from characters I have played before I had to move around the stage like a housewife to do this I walked quickly around the stage but I also had to keep my balance, for example when I was carrying tea things it would not of looked good if I had dropped the tea things.
In rehearsals I would rush around the stage and practice keeping me balance. I portrayed Alice in the way I had imagined her. Alice also has a very close relationship with her mother Florence this part was played by Laura to make this relationship believable we worked together and got to know each other probably we also would sit close to each other and I would put my arms round her as if to comfort her. I really wanted this relationship to look real as Alice’s mother is important to her.
As an example of this relationship in one of the scenes of the play Florence is not feeling well I went to comfort her I tried hard to make this look real and after the performance I got positive feedback for that scene. This made me very happy as I had worked hard to achieve this. Another of the plays I have studied is “Blue remembered Hills” a play by Dennis Potter about childhood in the 1940’s. The play is set during the Second World War it deals with many different issues such as Status.
Within the play there are children are all from lower middle class families, although the children do show there different status with there confidence and body movement. Angela one of the girls is very confident this contrasts with the character Donald who is very nervous and unsure of himself. The actors playing these characters have to work hard to achieve the personalities of the children. This play is a lot of fun to watch, but it would be very tiring to perform in, as the adult actors have to play the roles of young children.
These roles have to be played with a lot of energy. This play is very different from “Billy Liar” but there are some similarities. For example one of the most obvious differences is that “Billy Liar” is very realistic with some elements of fantasy For example when Billy has his Day Dreams, Blue remembered Hills is also very realistic even though the children have big imaginations they still do very normal things. One of the similarities between these two plays is that they both deal with a death.
In “Billy Liar” Billy’s grandmother Florence dies and in Blue Remembered Hills Donald is killed by a fire in the barn. The characters deal with death in their own way for example in “Billy Liar” Alice is very shocked about her mothers death and doesn’t know what to do with herself she is very quiet and even though her husband Geoffrey tries to comfort her there’s nothing he can do to make her feel better. The children in “Blue Remembered Hills” are very shocked about Donald’s death and tell themselves it wasn’t their fault it was an accident and there was nothing they could of done to save Donald.
The play ends on a very dramatic note with Donald’s death. This leaves the audience wondering what happened next. This is known as challenging the audience it makes you think about the play long after you have left the theatre. Even though Billy Liar and Blue Remembered Hills seem very different there are a lot of similarities between the two plays. In this essay I have tried to show the similarities, I have used examples to support my work.