An article about theatre special effects By Angela Theresa Egic
Considering there was a review of “Mr. Oatmeal” previously published, I will post an article about dream sequences and/or death experiences on stage.
A few of the plays in the Fresh Fruit Festival downtown from April 24th to May 7th, 2023 had scenes with such special effects; on a limited or not budget. An interesting thing to see in stage plays.
Screenwriting/playwrighting classes make it clear to do very limited amounts of flashbacks. As for dreams and death experiences, I do not recall too many rules. With films who have done this ad nauseum – Jacob’s Ladder, Inception, What Dreams May Come — through the years, how do plays make it clear? And without losing your audience knowing what’s now and what is a certain sequence. We all could get some hints from a few plays this season. “Mr. Oatmeal” showed us the thoughts and dreams of our non-human friends, in this case, an older cat. Well, in dreams or experience [of a cat]. .
“Eelpout” also showed the experience of a human drowning, and the experience of the eelpout fish he connected with, so, another really original way to show a change of viewpoint.
Both plays took on experiences of death. In Mr. Oatmeal did it with lighting cues and costume – much like the other show – and made it clear the delineation of the actors and the cats’ viewpoint was done with, dim lighting for the cat experiences, and fuller lighting; for the most part, for the human scenes.
“Mr. Oatmeal” was described:
“Matt Kirsch’s clever dark comedy about love and how long a cat should live plays a limited engagement at the 2023 festival.” — A.A. Cristi Apr. 11, 2023