Analysis: The Glass Menagerie

1435 Words 6 Pages
Ashley Wilson
Brown
English 152 OM3
4 December 2016
The Glass Menagerie Stevenson University’s production of Tennessee Williams’s The Glass Menagerie was a fascinating experience. The play’s setting took place in St. Louis in 1937 where a family of three lived in a small dingy apartment. The narrator and character, Tom Wingfield, desires to leave his mother, Amanda Wingfield, and his sister, Laura Wingfield but has a duty to support his family. Tom and Laura’s father happily abandons them years ago and has left Tom in a predicament in which he is now obligated to fulfill the duties that his father has abandoned. On the other hand, Laura is physically disabled and emotionally crippled in one leg. Instead of attending school and socializing
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Sound effects in a theater should be realistic and believable to the audience. In The Glass Menagerie play, different sound effects were present during specific scenes. According to the Washington Post, Matthew M. Neilson, sound designer of The Glass Menagerie, reveals that incorporating sound wasn’t an easy task. During scene seven, Laura and Jim begin dancing and then they suddenly bump into the table which caused the little glass animal from Laura’s collection to fall on the floor. During this scene, a glass breaking sound effect took place when the glass animal fell. Mathew M. Neilson states “That 's going to be the most difficult sound effect in the show, honestly...” (Wren 2011). Even though Neilson states that the sound effect of glass falling will be difficult to accomplish, I believe that the sound was realistic and the sound designer did an excellent job on creating the effect. Another sound effect that occurred during scene seven was the thunderstorm effect. Amanda decides to invite Jim O’Connor, who she assumes to be a “gentlemen caller.” As soon as they all decide to sit down and eat dinner in order to get to know one another, the thunderstorm effect takes place and the lights go out. The thunderstorm was highly realistic and I was able to point out that it was a thunderstorm effect because of its accuracy and similarity of a real thunderstorm. The sound design of The Glass Menagerie play …show more content…
The Glass Menagerie production implemented unique lighting design. Since the play was based on an atmosphere of memory, the lighting was unrealistic and dim. From the production note quotes for The Glass Menagerie, Tennessee Williams’s presents, “A free, imaginative use of light can be of enormous value in giving a mobile, plastic quality to plays of a more or less static nature” (Williams 22). Williams’s idea to focus light in on actors and selected areas have made it clear to the audience that the play’s lighting is corresponding to the actual plot of the play, memory. Unlike most plays, throughout the entire production of The Glass Menagerie, lighting was focused on specific characters in order for the audience to pay close attention to each actor. Even when the lights went out, the actors improvised and used candles to light up the room in order for the audience to still be engaged with the production. During scene seven, the actors used candle lighting when there were no actual lights, Amanda states, “Everybody sits still. I’ll light the candles. Isn’t it lucky we have them on the table Where’s a match? Which of you gentlemen can provide a match? (Williams 67). The Glass Menagerie lighting design corresponded with the play’s plot which grabbed the audience’s attention throughout the

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