Reaction Paper to the Secret in the Wings
The Secret in the Wings I was very unfamiliar with the text of story. I had never heard of the play or the author of the story. I went into this event with blind folds on so to speak. I had no idea what type of play it was, or anything about the theatre itself. I was very excited about Secret in the Wings, because of the one previous theatre experience I had I was very happy with.
This theatre was much larger and appeared to have a larger budget to work with as far as appearance. I really didn’t bring any expectations with me, other than excitement of seeing only my second real live theatre presentation. My previous experience was wonderful even though it was a very small production. So when I arrived at the theatre, I was very impressed with the size of the theatre itself and also surprised that there was no admission fee. When I entered the theatre space I was very impressed with the size of the theatre and the size of the stage itself.
The seating was auditorium style and very comfortable. There didn’t appear to be a bad seat in the house, you could see the entire stage from anywhere in the theatre. The stage was a box style rustic set-up possibly 1980’s era. The environment was dark, mysterious, with eerie music playing in the background. It had good lighting with lights flickering and the sound of a thunderstorm in the background. The stage was a three tier stage that seemed like a basement on bottom and living room area on the main level, with the top level set up as the house entrance and outside.
The set was very old fashioned style with old fashion lamps and furniture on the main part of the stage. At the top of the steps there was a door that appeared to be the main entrance of the cast. To the right of it was these mysterious bars, almost as if they were prison bars. All of this made me very curious about what the production was about. The play Secret in the Wings: The Secret: Something kept hidden or unexplained as in a mystery: something kept from the knowledge of others or shared only confidentially with a few: something taken to be key to a desired end.
In the Wings: Out of Sight in the stage wings: close at hand in the background: readily available. It’s a very dramatic play that encompass the very dark side of humans thoughts. It featured betrayal, infidelity, incest, infanticide, cannibalism and brutal murder all in a fantasy world of a book. It portrays a man with a tale chasing after a young beautiful girl to marry him, with 5 sub-stories read in a book by the man with a tale. It was a world of fantasy weaved together to tell an overall story like Beauty in the Beast, with a bizarre ending.
I’m not sure if it was a true musical play but there was singing throughout the performance. I think there was many conflicts told throughout the performance, but the main conflict would have to be the never ending pursuit of the young woman “Heidi” to marry our beast or “ogre” (Mr. Fitzpatrick) as they called him in the performance. Young Heidi is terrified. Her self-centered, distracted parents are about to leave for an evening out. Their next door neighbor Mr. Fitzpatrick has been hired to be her sitter. Heidi informs them that he is an ogre and he has a tail.
Her parents dismiss her fears as nonsense. However, we see Mr. Fitzpatrick coming down the stairs with a book in his hand , and he is a deformed ogre with a giant tail. Shortly after her parents leave, and repeatedly through the evening, Mr. Fitzpatrick will say to his charge, “Heidi, will you marry me? ” As, Heidi screams no, Mr. Fitzpatrick begins to read the book he his carrying. Thus, beginning one of the five other Fantasy stories taking place. The central mood was very confusing and over the top. I Felt as if it was overdone on drama and fantasy.
The scenes were a lot of fairy tales coming to life and hard to follow what was going on. The songs were very ghostly and dreary. All these things created a confused and disengaged audience. The conflict never really ended, in fact the ending took a very unusual twist, as the entire thing including the opening scene with Heidi and her parents was all a dream by young man who seemed to suffer from some type of disease and blindness. Secret in the Wings was written in the early 1990’s and was set in the 1930’s.
I am not really familiar with that time period but do remember that it was a time of depression here in the United States. I don’t think that the time period matters much in this production because the setting is really a world of fantasy. Throughout the fantasy world of the stories going on there seem to be this touch of old style, where there was kings and queens The story was set in the a world of fantasy. It jumped from many different settings, like the house of Heidi, a castle, a forest, to a cemetery. I can only relate to the setting in my imagination and from stories that I may have read as a child myself.
The space of the stage was very conducive to the settings they were trying to create. I noticed that cast members were very creative in their movement around the stage This play defiantly challenged my own values because even though I really believe a good imagination is very important in a person. I just felt it was way over the top and the some of the stories didn’t have any place in the play. I also didn’t see the reason for some of the things going like murder, and incest. These things are not something I can relate to and as a Christian view them as extreme sins of the world.
I feel there is no reason to portray them in this play, especially in the way they were presented here The structures for most of the performance were very loose. There didn’t seem to be anyone in charge so to speak, and those who were didn’t demand much structure. Because most of the settings were in a fantasy world I think the author wanted the structure to be free and loose. This play dealt with a lot of pleasures. Pleasures of the eyes, body, and mind. There seem to be more of a draw towards physical and spiritual pleasure. I think Mr.
Fitzpatrick’s attempt to seek Heidi to marry him showed love and passion towards her. There was also the scene of the Allerleira who was a beautiful woman that suddenly died and had a daughter that looked just like her, that the father tried and succeeded in having a sexual relationship with. So there was a tremendous amount of pleasure sought through the entire performance. The performance even ends with comfort being the final pleasure shown, when the mother shows compassion towards her handicapped child who just awoke from a bad dream.
I think the entire cast was focused on love and fantasy. The theme of the unknown and mysterious was enhanced by the music being played in the background. This along with the sense of touch was used to demonstrate sleek and swift movements of exotic feelings. This made the audience really feel as if they were in some sort of dream. It really made the audience use their imagination to realize what was going on. I believe the author’s main intention was to introduce the audience to a world of fairy tale where we dream of a world that everything is wonderful and exotic.
It’s a dark, surreal wade through the muddier parts of our minds. My overall experience was very displeased with the entire performance. I just felt it was very overdone. It was very confusing and very hard to follow. I did think the costumes and stage design was very good but the story of the play was not my style. There was no apparent cumulative point to The Secret in the Wings. Enveloped by a sense of foreboding and menace, none of the work’s tales comes to a completely happy ending. As a result, the audience leaves without having had a deep or complete experience.