This change in Lewis is apparent when he describes the opera as being about “important things, like love and fidelity” and when he reacts genuinely hurt to when he discovers that his girlfriend Lucy has been having sex with Nick. Ultimately Lewis ends his relationship with Lucy because of their conflicting principles. In addition, Lewis also benefits from the production through his partnership with the mentally ill as he is able to understand what the “insane” people are really like. Before Lewis held very stereotypical views of the ill and feared that one of them might “forget to take their medication and go berserk.” Lewis’ stage directions were spoken with “hesitation” , showing a lack in confidence, but through the progression of “Cosi Fan Tutte” Lewis forms
Important things. Now all you can talk about is reactionary drivel like Cosi Fan Tutte. LEWIS: It’s about important things – like love and fidelity.” (Lucy, Lewis, Act II Sc (ii) pg 70). This line tells us that Lewis does find love important in his life, despite what Lucy says. When Lucy admits that she’s sleeping with Nick, Lewis is stunned and begins to quote the play Cosi Fan Tutte “Woman’s constancy is like an Arabian Phoenix.
From the beginning of Cosi Nick and Lucy seem to shape Lewis’ views politically as well as his moral beliefs surrounding “free love.” Working with the patients changes Lewis’ outlook on fidelity and pulls him away from his friend’s mentalities. As a result Nick and Lucy attempt to pressure Lewis to go to “moratorium meetings,” to do a “piece of theatre that is meaningful such as Brecht” and to choose between “the funny farm” or their “radicalisation of the nation.”This highlights how Roy is not the only manipulator in the play. When Lucy questions Lewis’ priorities and his choice to do an opera about love, “an emotional indulgence for the privileged few,” Lewis highlights how “love and fidelity are important things.” His rejection of Nick and Lucy’s beliefs, further strengthens how their manipulations of Lewis have been ultimately unsuccessful. Therefore Nowra shows the audience how even though a person may try to manipulate other characters in Cosi depending on the matter they are passionate about, it may not always
However as he works with the patients, he develops a new perspective and insight into certain matters and himself. When Nick and Lucy denounce him for doing a play about love, by declaring that ‘only mad people in this day and age would do a work about love and infidelity’, Lewis is able to realise that love and friendship is more important than politics. He learns about the importance of friendship, clearly evident, that he attends the moratorium, helping the patients prepare for their performance with an additional rehearsal. Lewis also finds strength later in the play, which he was devoid of to begin with . At the start, he is overwhelmed by the patients such as Cherry, Doug and Roy by their 'crazy' behaviour.
Cherry seems to become more nutty when she falls for Lewis. But that’s what the audience wants to see, the normality of people turning mad because of love. Nowra is trying to cut out the fact that these people are really insane and hid it with the fact that love is what is important in this play, for people to understand that love makes you mad whether you are or not. As Julie says ‘Love is hallucinating without the
Beneath the humor in Così is a brutal depiction of society’s treatment of the mentally ill. Louis Nowra’s ‘Cosi’ is a play set in 1971 Melbourne that takes place within a mental asylum. It follows the efforts of young director Lewis Riley in directing the patients there in a performance of the Mozart opera ‘Cosi Fan Tutte’. Despite the classification of the play as a comedy, beneath ‘Cosi’ is a representation of the brutal treatment experienced by the mentally ill at the hands of society. Nowra employs humor as a means of connecting with audiences and as a vessel to discus difficult issues in a way that is comfortable and accessible. Comedy is also incorporated as a means of characterization and of personalizing mental illness.
By Act 2, Nowra let the audience see the humanity in the patients using the play within the play by allowing us to see their back stories and why they are in the mental institution, testing the audiences prejudices about the mentally ill as well as the reality of mental institutions. The stereotype that all people who are patients of an asylum are ‘loonies’ and dangerously violent was dismissed to a certain extent for Doug was seen as an extreme danger to everyone and Cherry and Henry did show signs of violence. The end with Lewis pulls the audience back to reality after such a successful night by not giving the audience the happy ending that was to be expected. This sorrowful ending implies that ‘asylums are the most inefficient places on this earth.’ To conclude, Nowra’s purpose of having the play within a play in Cosi was to allow the characters of the play to give their thoughts on the themes of Cosi Fan Tutte thus giving the audience a deeper understanding of the issues such as love and fidelity, sanity and insanity and to really test the prejudices that the audience hold against the mentally ill. ‘They are normal people who have done extraordinary things, thought extraordinary
The final monologue (spoken by Lewis) at the end of the play summarises the future of the patients, Nowra is able to comment on how bad things happen to good people simply because they are given the title of being ‘mad’. His use of monologues helps to further the audience’s understanding of the play as well as being able to
In ‘Cosi’, a play written by Louis Nowra, the meaning of love is explored and challenged by the different views of the mental patients, the protagonist Lewis and his friends Nick and Lucy. Nowra considers the importance of love in human relationships and a deeper enduring bond of love based on trust, respect and loyalty. The relationship between Lewis and the patients changes him. At the beginning of the play Lewis is narrow minded and thinks that in those days politics is more important than love. However, as he continues to perform with the patients finds for himself that love is most definitely imperative for humans.
Nurse’s first fault was sneaking messages to and from Romeo and Juliet to one another. This shows that she approves and is encouraging their relationship together. This influenced Juliet’s decision to marry Romeo, making Nurse’s actions partly at blame for Juliet’s fate. After Romeo’s banishment, Nurse tells Juliet that “I think you are happy in this second match” with Paris. The quick encouragement of the marriage to Paris shows Nurse’s new disloyalty to Juliet.