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Building An Appreciation For Angels In America By Reading, Acting, And Enjoying It

By Author: Arsenalo
Total Articles: 116

Although he made comments against gay people in real life, Ernesto connected with his character Joe as "a man who [needs] to make the decision [about his identity] so he can be comfortable with himself." Also as Joe, Miguel, who often seemed uncomfortable in class, was able to ask Prior, "How did you get infected? Did you have sex without protection?"

As well as conversing with the play through the voices of characters, students interacted with each other as their characters. In one class, I asked students to take their character out of the play's context and away from Kushner's words, acting out improvisational scenes. When they walked into Cartier Replica class, each student took four scraps of paper, on which they wrote two locations and two emotions. Scenes unfolded as students randomly picked out of a hat. Yelena as a sad Roy ended up in a street corner with Miguel as a scared Joe; Gloria as a jealous Louis conversed in a beauty parlor with a depressed Harper. Although some students were hindered by stage fright, the class at large enjoyed the activity; all students participated. Students were able to proceed with each scene because they knew enough about their characters to take them out of the context of the script. Despite their varied identities, whether gay Jew or Valium addict or notorious lawyer, characters in Angels in America became relevant to students. Interacting with characters on a personal level, students internalized each personality as their own.

Throughout our work with Angels in America, I found a lot of success. The majority of students engaged the material in a way that drew from their personal viewpoints and then expanded these ideas. On reflection, I also realized that gauging sincerity in a class environment like this was hard to achieve. For students like Miguel and Ernesto, whose initial opinions on gayness were not supportive, I could not expect that any one classroom workshop might alter their mindsets. In the activity above, they may have just been playing a part or playing along. After all, this was a theater class. Even if they were just playing, though, Miguel and Ernesto still were active in the classroom environment. Because my initial goal with Angels in Tag Heuer Replica Watches America was to engage in conversation with, gain exposure to, and construct definitions of gayness, I found this too to be a successful end. At the conclusion of the unit, the most rewarding successes came from students who found new goals.

To building an appreciation for Angels in America by reading, acting, and enjoying it, students like Jessika, Alicia, Gloria, and Fernando started a long-term friendship that continued outside the classroom.

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