Stagecraft in Kindertransport

1358 Words6 Pages
How does Samuels use stagecraft and dramatic techniques to good and imaginative effect? The author of Kindertransport, Diane Samuels, uses stagecraft to add tension, character and plot to the story. She utilizes stage directions to an extent that adds to the story, not just direct the actors. There are many ways that she does this, but by far the most obvious is the Ratcatcher’s shadow and music. The music implies control. By using the music when we see Eva in the first scene, Samuels intends for us to get a sense of foreboding from it, implying Eva’s near future and telling us that the “villain” is already there, already in control of the whole tale. This creates a sense of inevitability that lasts through the whole story. “EVA puts the book down. Music stops.” This shows that Eva is out of his control for now. The shadow of the Ratcatcher, even though it appears only twice in the whole play, is a direction that adds a lot to the play. The shadow implies that everything falls under his influence; nothing is free of the Ratcatcher’s corrupting touch. The shadow appears twice, once at the end of Act One, where Eva is scared of her, and Evelyn reassures her. This also blurs the past, a technique we will look at later. If you think about it, Eva and Evelyn is the same person, so she’s talking to herself, a sure sign of mental instability. The second time the shadow appears, Evelyn is at her lowest point. Faith has decided to leave, leaving her all alone. She is scared of the future, as Eva was the first time the shadow appeared. The fact that the shadow appeared in modern times shows that Evelyn cannot truly break free of the Ratcatcher’s terrible influence, due to her traumatic childhood experiences. Another clever way that Samuels creates plot is through the blurring of past and present, showing characters together. And in the directions, this provides
Open Document