The Crucible Play Review Essay

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The Crucible at the Christa McAuliffe Middle School At the middle school called Christa McAuliffe Middle School, a new play was shown this past week with a production of Arthur Miller's The Crucible, directed by Jonathon Smiths. I attended Saturday's performance to see one of my former classmates act in the play I have seen The Crucible twice before, once live at Lincoln High School and once on film, and in both of those productions the script was sharply trimmed. I found this production of The Crucible powerful and emotionally satisfying despite uneven acting by the cast. Miller's scathing condemnation of hypocrisy stands strong even after 50 years. Characters like Giles, leaped out of the lines as realistic examples of imperfect…show more content…
Abigail is the inciting villain of the story; the play lacked the proper 'punch' in the first half because the audience wasn't able to hate Abigail's deceit as Miller intended. Likewise, the old man playing Judge Danforth had a great persona for that character but apparently knew only a few of his lines -- the courtroom scene dragged despite evidence of good directing. Overall, the cast's Southern accents worked against their attempts at realistically portraying 1690s Salem, Massachusetts. And a few of the actors were just downright annoying. However, I was impressed overall with the directing of Smiths. He got the cast to really understand the underpinnings of Miller's great tirade against those who stifle free thought, and drew the key scenes to a good emotional climax. The lighting was adequate; the set design was simple but effective; the staging didn't add much to the play, but it didn't detract either. My main gripe about the production design centers on their programs (absolutely, terribly unprofessional) and the pixilated images used in place of backdrops (projected against a screen) In my opinion that was a great idea, but it was very poorly executed. Ultimately, a play succeeds because of the strength of its story not its stage dressing. The Crucible at the Mosaic Theater communicated the heart of Miller's play, leaving audiences with a strong understanding of the horrible

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