Since it's basically going to be a lot of talking between people, your characters need to be as believable as possible. In great plays, the inner tensions between characters enact themselves in external ways. In other words, the characters need to have problems that show up in their behaviour. What does your character want? What is keeping your character from getting what they want? What stands in their way? Thinking of interesting jobs can be a good way of developing a character. What's the hardest job you can imagine?
Swingin Solo with Jack of All Trades Michael rault
Essentially, though, with this type of "clockwork" play, technically closer to farce, once you've wound up the first act, the second act is to some extent easier as the spring is allowed to unwind again. Character all in this instance is partly dictated by the requirements of the plot. Sheila, the wife, for instance, needed to be a vague, unworldly, apparently trusting woman - even if she was to get the last word. Ginny, more difficult to establish, as she had to be sleeping around with older men and two-timing our young hero while still retaining our sympathy. Going to need an actress with a great deal of charm. (Charm is very difficult to write.). No wonder they say that farce is an older dramatist's medium. The techniques involved are formidable.
The play could conveniently cover a tidy and brief span. Early morning through to early inventory evening. Ironically, when the play went to the west End in the so-called Swinging Sixties, i was asked to reset the first scene to the day before, around 4pm - the argument being that the audiences would be less shocked at seeing a young unmarried couple. The logic in this confounded. You mean they couldn't have been making love in the afternoon? So much for the traditional unities. I guess Aristotle hadn't reckoned with that one.
This type of play requires intensely detailed plotting. It relies on coincidence, on things not being said or sometimes being said and misunderstood. It requires that we know from second to second the attitude of each of the four characters to each other and what each perceives as being the situation. The wife, sheila, for instance, will know practically nothing throughout. Greg will know a little. Ginny and Philip, the guilty parties, will know it all. And both will try desperately, in an uneasy alliance, to maintain the charade. It seemed important, though, that by the end the tables would be turned. Another decision was also being taken at this point, about time structure.
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A side-effect of all this is that the location question has been solved. A two-set play: Ginny's flat initially, then Philip and Sheila's house. One would have been nicer but. Making a virtue out of a necessity though, since the plot demands two sets, this prologue in the flat does give us a chance to establish the relationship between Greg and Ginny. Once the intricacies of the mistaken-identity plot start uncoiling, as soon as first he and then she arrive at the parents, there's going to be very little time or opportunity to establish much of a relationship.
Events will be moving too fast. The audience needs to care about your characters. (so you should too.) An audience that doesn't care stops listening in the end. It's difficult to get everyone to care, and some characters defy caring about, but the ones you want them to root for need to have qualities an love audience cares about. They can have flaws, certainly - they'd better - but they'll need a certain innocence, a trust, that makes us really want things to go right for them in the end. Whether it does or not is another matter.
Answer: he follows her. But if he follows her, it means he must necessarily arrive second. And for the sake of the initial confusion of identity, it's important that he arrives first. In which case, it's important that although she leaves first, so that he is convinced he's following her, in fact she is delayed so he arrives first. (The plotting is getting rather complicated.).
That means that Greg finds his way to the supposed parents' house without following her. Which means he already knows the address. How does he know the address? Because he finds it somewhere, written down in her flat, that's why. Which conveniently - wait for it - explains why ginny tells him it's her parents' address. Which is not a very clever lie because why on earth should someone write down their parents' address? Which makes him suspicious, which is why he follows her. Of course, when he arrives and there's this sweet middle-aged woman, Sheila, he realises Ginny wasn't lying after all and that this is her parents' house.
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Obviously she must have told him it does. Why should she do that? Because she's coming down to break off her relationship with Philip and doesn't want Greg to know where she's going. It's a spur of the moment lie, to put the boyfriend off the scent. Where does she tell him? We are going to need a pre-scene, a prologue before we can start the narrative rolling. With luck, this prologue could be used to serve more than one purpose. But how does he get there, to the house?
the likelihood and frequency of production. This has virtually nothing to do with the quality of the plays themselves and much to do with the cost. But it isn't only cost. In virtually every theatre department, economy often equals better art. The fewer the locations, the shorter the time frame, the fewer the characters, the less dialogue, the less scenery, the less everything, the better. It was important that Greg arrived in the house convinced that it belonged to ginny's parents. How does that come about?
Also, unless you are extremely skilful, you will be looking at a number of different locations. Both these decisions, once taken, will have far-reaching effects. They should be taken with great care. Let's look at that idea, the father-daughter one, which was to resume grow into relatively Speaking. Since the younger man, Greg, needed to meet both the older man, Philip, and his wife, sheila, it made sense to set the piece in the older couple's house. All that was needed was a contrivance to get the girl, ginny, there as well. Perhaps she was there to break off her relationship with Philip?
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Ayckbourn's 64 plays include: The Square cat (1959 relatively Speaking (1965 absurd Person Singular (1972 bedroom Farce (1975 norman Conquests trilogy (1973 way upstream (1981 a chorus of Disapproval essay (1984). A small Family business (1987 communicating doors (1994 house (House garden) (1999 damsels in Distress trilogy (2002 preparatory work is vital to all play-making. The questions need to be asked: how, when, where and with whom are you going to choose to tell your story? In other words: narrative, time, location, characters. These decisions are made in no particular order and often overlap. Some have already been dictated by the nature of the initial idea. It is often the narrative that predetermines the where and when. If your story intends to cover, say, the rise and fall of a family dynasty, it follows that events will be spread over several time periods.