Over the next three weeks we’re having workshops on language and the themes of the play. First up: scansion.
In the rehearsal room, Denise put up butcher’s paper and a speech in oversized text, and we went through how to scan the speech. Now that I’ve engaged with the material more, it is making far more sense.
We started discussing Denise's vision for the show. She is using ideas from the book “Prospero’s Island”, a Jungian analysis of The Tempest. The underlying theme is alchemy, where Prospero has used her time on the island to merge mind and body. In Milan, Prospero was entirely in her head, obsessed with her books and ignoring the ruling of the state, and thus is exiled. On the island, Prospero is forced to come into her body. Through her magic, intuition, and prescience, she merges the two, becoming an enlightened being or a Renaissance magis. The other characters represent various stages of alchemy, and the mind/body dichotomy - Caliban is earth/mud and body. Ariel is fire and spirit.
Much discussion about how all of this, themes, scansion etc, will be important in rehearsal, but not stressed in performance.
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