The Romeo and Juliet play by William Shakespeare, set at Stage House Theater Grossmont College. This was a continuation of their 2015 series. It was held on the following dates March 12, 13, 14,19,20,21 at 7.30 P.M and March 14, &21 at 2p.m. Jeannette Thomas was the director she is known for her great artistic works. She has directed many other plays in the college like “The Fun Factory.’’ The playwright was done by David Lindsay –Abaire. David has also been involved in theater arts for a long time in the college. The actors’ names were not readily available as they used their stage names. The day when I got a chance to see the show was on March 21 at 7.30 P.M. Romeo and Juliet is the greatest love story ever told. Most English literatures recognize the ironic love story. Its setting is on the Prohibition Era in Chicago. It is a family drama of the timelessness of forbidden love. The strong desires of Romeo and Juliet are hindered by a deadly organized crime feud. A dilemma comes into the light whether to choose family or their love. It is a tragic romance. Audiences are usually challenged to examine not only the unfolding of passion but also the inevitability of fate. This makes it a very interesting play to watch and anyone who had the chance to visit the college’s Theatre had no other choice.
The plot in many great works usually contains some very basic ingredients. There has to be the initial situation, conflict, complication, climax, suspense, denouement, and conclusion. The play followed all the fundamental elements. The explanation of each one of them is as follows Initial situation.
There is a family feud between the Capulet and the Montague servants. The play opens when one of the Capulet servants signals to the Montague servants using a simple hand gesture. Unfortunately, this leads to a full-out fight. The Prince becomes so furious and points out that anyone who will be held holding a public fight would be put to death. On another part of the stage, the two lovers are introduced. Juliet is a young girl aged thirteen –years old; she belongs to the Capulet side. Romeo, on the other hand, represents the Montague side. He is supposedly head over heels in love with a girl called Rosaline. Rosaline though was too busy for him.
Romeo crashes into a Capulet Party has hopes amidst hope that he would be able to have a glimpse on Rosaline. Instead, he sees Juliet and it was love, at first sight. They talk for a maximum of five minutes before starting to make out. The conflict occurs when Romeo discovers that Juliet is a Capulet and Juliet discovers that Romeo is a Montegue.
When Romeo and Juliet have some, alone time, they concluded that the family feud would not stand in between their love. They sought the help of some adults who they think understand them better. They are; Juliet’s nurse and Romeo’s confessor Friar Laurence, who is a priest. Before the lapse of twenty-four hours, they are doing a secret wedding in the priest’s church. The complication comes in when Tyblant finds out that Romeo had crushed a Capulet’s part. He challenges him to a duel.
Climax Romeo accepts the challenge, in the duel, he kills Tyblant, and Tyblant kills Mercuito. Romeo flees as soon before the prince pronounces him banished. Romeo and Juliet are hysterical about the sour turn of events. The nurse and the Friar arrange for one more night for them to spend together.
Juliet is forced into marriage with Paris. She runs to the Frair and threatens to commit suicide if he did not help her to untangle herself from this mess. The solution is Juliet to drink a portion that will make her appear dead. When she wakes up in her family tomb, she will meet Romeo and Frair waiting for her.
Romeo does not get reception at the Manuta. Therefore, he does not find out that Juliet is alive. He kills Paris at the Capulet tomb and drinks the poison. When Juliet wakes up she sees Romeo dead she kills herself.
The citizens of Verona come in, and the two lovers are laying side-by-side dead. The two sides decide to be good friends. It was a great story that brought many to tears. It was not only intriguing but also interesting and entertaining. The actual script was good, and each actor was aware of what they were supposed to do.
The Romeo character was acted out well. The main actor was able to bring it out very well. The expression of love on first sight was so intriguing. He looked deeply into the eyes of Juliet and dived into making out with her with a perfect kiss. When the situation called for a somber moment, he moved the audience to tears. For example, when Romeo held Juliet and was not sure whether she was dead or alive. The pain was all over the whole theatre one could actually feel it. The character of Juliet though was not very well depicted. The actor had some shortcomings. At the scenes, which required some bit of romance, she seemed to be shy. For example, the first kiss brought some nervous reactions from her and at a point, and she looked away. Such scenes made her uncomfortable. The role of the Frair and the nanny are well acted. The actors take up their roles very well. The priest offers a Bible verse to when marrying the two secretly. The Capulet and Montegue side also act the family feud very well, when it was starting, and the plaintiff bowed, it was funny how they came to fight each other. Other small characters like Paris and Prince were done well by the actors. Their volume and articulation were excellent.
The play was set against a turbulent backdrop of Prohibition Era Chicago; it blended a Boardwalk Empire-esque mafia. This helped to bring out the actual environment within which Shakespeare had written the book. The costumes and makeup were true to the period. Romeo wore a pair of loose trousers and rolled shirt that were weather beaten to show that the montegue were peasants. Juliet was adorned in an expensive gown, jewellery to show the Capulets were well off, and rich. The priest was in robes and the nurse had an apron. The prince was in royal gowns and a crown. The Capulet side had more expensive clothes that the Montegue. The sound effects contributed by setting the mood. The performance was a musical piece. The orchestra performance was exceptional. The violins and the pianos were played very well to suit the mood. The sound effects were great. In a scene where there was suspense, the tempo was higher. This helped to keep the whole play more entertaining. The reaction The audience was attentive throughout the whole play. Some shed tears when emotions overwhelmed them. The audience was involved. The overall rating of the show would receive a four out of five. Some minor improvements would make it superb.