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Shvoong Home>Books>Performance Analysis on Moliere''s "Tartuffe" Review

Performance Analysis on Moliere''s "Tartuffe"

Book Review   by:obutesra     Original Author: Moliere
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I first want to focus on the subject of the play and mention it’s unfamiliar and familiar sides. The subject of the play was related with the present society. The class difference, devoutness, church’s reaction to theatres etc. It was very original with breakig the convention of “plays reflect the real life”. Generally theatrical plays are performed as if they are real. In those kind of plays main aim is to present the play as part of a real life. However, Moliere breaks this convention, and makes the audience feel that theatre is an establishment and there is a performence, it is not a real life. For instance, before the theatre started the manager came and told that the play was forbidden by church and this was their last night, the performers were sitting in chairs on the stage. The spectators were always reminded that it is a “play”, not a real life. There were some other things to support this idea such as two men who were wearing masks and actor’s performance. Two men only wore black dresses and capes. Their role was changing from scene to scene. Sometimes they were a door to separate performance or a wall to hide the performers. I think they were on the stage to support the idea of “it is a play”. The other thing was performance of the actor’s. I want to mention that performance was not naturalistic. Gestures and mimes were exaggerated. I think as other subjects this was also to support the idea of “not a real life”.The actors did not use any microphones. They used their plain voices. I want to mention that I liked the performers’ acting style because they were acting related with their characters. AIhough it’s originality I think the subject of the play was very ordinary. It did not make me to think about it after the performance ended. However as an audience I never felt boredom. Because the tempo of the performance was constant. There was a continuity in the tempo. It has never decreased, continued fastly. It always took my attention during the play. While creating this tempo music and dialogues were more dominant then other issues like lighting, monologues etc. There was not any architectural desing on the stage and theatre. This really called my attention. Maybe this was done intentionally to support the idea of “not a real life but a play”. It was a simple saloon and a stage. There were only chairs and some cushions for performers to sit. The stage was not changed during the play. Also there was not any technological effects like smoke or rain machines. The stage was proscenium arch and there were some lodges. The location of the spectator was frontal. And the lighting was visible for audience because They were hanged above the stage[1]. The lighting was changing according to the speed of play. The other thing that supported the speed of the play was music.
There was a music group who were sitting near the stage and music was live during the play. It was performed instrumental and live. None of the actors sung. In this production music completed the space that décor created. It really had very important role in this play. It changed according to the mood of the events and strengthened the emotionality. I really liked the costumes of performers. Their costumes reflected their time. The cloths and wigs were adjusting. Also, they reflected the class difference. For instance Orgon, Cléante, Mariane, Damis etc. who belong to upper class were dressy and the Dorine who is maid was wearing simple cloths. However, alhough the play consisted two acts performers did not change their costumes. In the play both men and women used wigs and performers’ hairstyles were reflecting the 17th century France. As I mentioned before cloths and wigs were adjusted. Like costumes the hairstyle reflected the class difference. Upper class women used curly wig and Dorine who is maid did not use a wig. When it comes to make up masks were used only by these two men whose role was door or wall. They covered the part of men’s faces. Masks were not related with their performances. Also, any of the performers did not wear masks. Make up was used only to make performers more beautiful. It did not describe the character. Frankly, before I went to the play, I thought it would be boring. However, after the play ended it turned to opposite and I really liked. It was funny. Also, it gave some social messages but by not telling them directly but indirectly. So, it was sarcastic. I liked the play because of its tempo, performers and music. I especially liked the scene where Dorine tried to change Mariane’s decision to accept her father’s wish to marry her with Tartuffe. It was like a musical. Music fastened the action. Marienne was moving as Dorine told. I think it was a funny scene. All in all, the main theme of the play was “this is a play not a real life” and every element of the play underlined this idea. I am sure that there are other points that I can not remember or I could not notice with watching only one time. I really liked this game and it was very funny. Alhough, it gave some messages it made me laugh.
Published: August 13, 2007   
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