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The Stories We Tell: A Comparison of How Attic and American Tragedy Have Shaped Cultural Narratives

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The purpose of this paper is to explore what can broadly be described as the "American cultural narrative" by investigating and analyzing a particular element of American culture, the tragic play. In this paper, fifth-century Athenian and twentieth-century American tragedies

The purpose of this paper is to explore what can broadly be described as the "American cultural narrative" by investigating and analyzing a particular element of American culture, the tragic play. In this paper, fifth-century Athenian and twentieth-century American tragedies are placed side by side, investigated, and analyzed with the hope of discovering aspects of the genre that are unique to American playwrights and might teach us something about the way in which we, as Americans, are separated culturally from others. The paper begins by analyzing the nature of the tragic genre before detailing how it has played a similar role here in the United States as it played in fifth-century Athens. Then, by analyzing primary texts, I seek to identify those unique aspects of the American form of the genre that reveal new insight into the American cultural narrative. The paper concludes by suggesting that the greatest insight that the tragic genre has to offer is that personal redemption and individualism are unique to American tragedy, suggesting that they might be unique aspects of the American cultural narrative.

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2018-05

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Myth, Magic and The Tempest of the Future

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Over the course of my undergraduate experience, I have grown significantly as an artist - developing an assortment of strengths in a variety of cinematic disciplines ranging from screenwriting and producing to post-production and cinematography. All the while, I have

Over the course of my undergraduate experience, I have grown significantly as an artist - developing an assortment of strengths in a variety of cinematic disciplines ranging from screenwriting and producing to post-production and cinematography. All the while, I have been giving back to the Sun Devil community by serving in a number of leadership positions around campus which exposed me to a plethora of communities differ from my own. The combination of these experiences allows me to continuously explore new passions in synergy with my art. Two of these standing as the concept of live performance and the work of William Shakespeare. Through this exploration of artistic synergy, I have experimented with integrating the works of the Bard of Avon into the realm of cinema. From the beginning of 2105, I have been drafting a feature-length screenplay which serves as a quasi-prequel to Shakespeare's The Tempest. Under the title of A Kingdom or a Cure, it tells the story of the revolutionary war-hero Miguel Prosperiti as he struggles to save his daughter form a mysterious disease which has baffled the best medical minds while the country he has rebuilt comes crumbling down in post-apocalyptic Italy. Deposed and left to die at the hands of his brother, Miguel must defend his child from the evil witch Sycorax who attempts to kill the pair in order to feed off of their suffering and prolong her own life. Serving to fill the requirements for the Film and Media Production Capstone, A Kingdom or a Cure reimagines the world of Shakespeare's play and creates a new context for the words and actions of its leading characters. Such stands as the foundation of what I have created for what I have created as my applied project - a stylistic re-imagining of William Shakespeare's The Tempest which draws from multiple interpretations of the narrative to be performed as a piece within a larger theatrical presentation staged with only the classical techniques which stand contemporary to the Bard of Avon. The remainder of this document shall lie in six primary sections. The first two establish the project and detail its evolution over the course of the thesis process. Next stands as the production log which chronicles my journey over the Classical and Poetic Drama course as well as the rehearsal process for Mythfest and the Chaucer Festival. Fourth shall consist of a bibliography of all the texts which I have worked with over the course of this thesis experience. Fifth rests A Kingdom or a Cure - the screenplay which inspired me to embark on the grand journey which this thesis has taken me. Sixth shall assume the form of the PowerPoint Presentation which I presented at my thesis defense which contains a collection of images which have provided me with artistic inspiration throughout the thesis process. In conjunction with one another, these pieces serve as the written elements of my applied project.

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2016-05

Lighting Fire Under the Stereotype: The Art of Portraying Women in Drama

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Female social stereotypes paralyze female actors when approaching roles in theatre. This thesis discusses some of the social stereotypes I have encountered in theatre and how I have chosen to orient myself through those stereotypes. Combined with a 45 minute

Female social stereotypes paralyze female actors when approaching roles in theatre. This thesis discusses some of the social stereotypes I have encountered in theatre and how I have chosen to orient myself through those stereotypes. Combined with a 45 minute performance, I took iconic female roles that embody stereotypes such as, the girl-next-door, the mother, the ugly girl, the naïve virgin, and the tomboy, and tried to approach them through the given circumstances and not the stereotypes. The result ended in a powerful, vulnerable presentation that ignited the human truths under each stereotype. In order to create insightful, empowering female characters, actors must look at the given circumstances for the subtextual truths.

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2014-05

Once On This Island - An Exploration of Nontraditional Casting

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Only in the world of acting can an individual be denied a job simply on the basis of their appearance, and in my thesis, I sought to explore alternatives to this through the concept of nontraditional casting and casting against

Only in the world of acting can an individual be denied a job simply on the basis of their appearance, and in my thesis, I sought to explore alternatives to this through the concept of nontraditional casting and casting against "type", which included the presentation of a full-length production of the musical "Once on this Island" which I attempted to cast based on vocal quality and skill alone rather than taking physical characteristics into account. I researched the history and implementation of nontraditional casting, both in regards to race and other factors such as gender, socio-economic status, and disability. I also considered the legal and intellectual property challenges that nontraditional casting can pose. I concluded from this research that while nontraditional casting is only one solution to the problem, it still has a great deal of potential to create diversity in theater. For my own show, I held the initial auditions via audio recording, though the callback auditions were held in person so that I and my crew could appraise dance and acting ability. Though there were many challenges with our cast after this initial round of auditions, we were able to solidify our cast and continue through the rehearsal process. All things said, the show was very successful. It is my hope that those who were a part of the show, either as part of the production or the audience, are inspired to challenge the concept of typecasting in contemporary theater.

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2014-12

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The Helen Project

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Though people are beginning to analyze the internet as an active social force, a seemingly insurmountable problem permeates all criticisms of the world wide web: how do we begin to frame the Internet as a subject of inquiry when its

Though people are beginning to analyze the internet as an active social force, a seemingly insurmountable problem permeates all criticisms of the world wide web: how do we begin to frame the Internet as a subject of inquiry when its role in our lives is constantly shifting, continually slipping from definition, yet undeniably reconstructing a new human condition? I believe an answer may lie in placing the Internet within the context of the Faust Myth \u2014 a legend that has repeatedly been used to explore humanity's obsession with power. For my undergraduate honors thesis, I wrote and performed an adaptation of Christopher Marlowe's Doctor Faustus in which I frame the Internet as a modern Faustian contract, and advocate a new approach to the use of technology.

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2013-05