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English 444

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London Theatre 2017: Final Assignment

Due Tuesday, at 10:00am—either in the classroom or in an email (as you all chose to do for the midterm paper).

I want you to write a performance review either of a particular but substantial scene of the play or of the entire production. I want you to explain what you think the project of the target you’ve chosen is, and then describe and explain what production choices the company has made in order to enact that project. In doing this you will be making an argument about what the production/scene you choose does and why. Please write with the awareness that someone else could have a very different understanding of how the scene/production you write about functions, and you are thus doing your best in this 1000 word paper to make a case for YOUR way of understanding it. Detail is important for this, as is the explanation of how the choices you have noticed support your claim. (Go back and reread the samples I gave you from your midterm essays. I chose those because they each are rich in detail and strong in explaining the writer’s theory of why the director made those choices and how those choices are important to the production as a whole.)

The syllabus for the course explains that this paper counts 100 points. It is a “high-stakes” paper, a place to show that you have progressed towards successfully paying attention to and reflecting on the kind of theatrical production that has been the central work of this class.

You will write something quite similar to this for your final paper, except it will focus on the whole play and not just one scene.

The criteria I will apply will be:

• Function: your claim about the overall function of the production/scene.
• Specifics: staging details you found of importance to understanding the production/scene.
• Explanations: your explanations of how those details support your claim about the scene’s overall function.