The plays that I saw on Saturday were quite interesting but they definitely were not one act plays. I made a mistake when I stated they were.
“Bereav’d of Light” was about an hour long. It was a story of a runaway slave who bumps into an Ojibway indian in the forest. The slave is being persued by his owner and his scout (who is the slaves half-brother) while the indian is in the forest waiting for a vision to lead help him free his dead brothers spirit. These two people bond and learn that they are more alike than they are different and form an unlikely friendship.
The second play “The Fellini Radio Plays” was actually 3 mini-plays in one. The scripts for these mini one-act plays, which were written for the radio, were found after Fellini’s death. The first play was about a well-liked rich man and a fast-talking poor shyster. It all starts with the shyster asking for a match and ends up with him stealing all of the rich mans clothes. The second play was about couple. The man leaves to go and work in the city and promises that he will be back to marry her in a year. They promise to write to each other but neither of them knows how to read or write so they send blank peices of paper to each other every day. Eventually the man learns how to read and when he does that he finds out he is no longer in love with the girl he left. The third play was actually performed as if we were the audience of an old-fashioned radio show, with the microphones, sound folleys artists etc. It was the longest of the three and the most entertaining. If anything it was quite outrageous and kept the audience laughing and at points participating through out.
This Wednesday I’m going back to Stratford to see “King Lear” with Christopher Plummer playing Lear. I read this Shakespeare play in Grade 12 I believe and it was one of the best Tragedies that I have read by the Bard. The basic story is that King Lear has three daughters. He decides to give them the power of the kingdom but first they must show there love for him. The first two daughters, Goneril and Regan, exaggerate and lie about their love for their father. The youngest and purest daughter after seeing the blatant lies that her sisters had just told her fathers tells him “that she loved his majesty according to her duty, neither more nor less”. King Lear is shocked by this and was banished from the court. As soon as she is out of the picture the other daughters begin treating the King badly and eventually banish him from the kingdom. With this banishment and his waning health the king ends up going quite insane. The story continues from there but I don’t want to ruin it for anyone who is planning on reading it.
I really think it is going to be a great play. I saw “Death of a Salesman” a couple years back and it was amazing. Depressing but amazing. I expect as much from “King Lear”.