August Wilson, Acting Thesis, The Piano Lesson
In the fall of 2007, I was cast in the University of Central Florida's production of The Piano Lesson. My thesis will examine my performance in the role of Grace, as well as understudying the role of Berniece under the direction of Professor Belinda Boyd. In addition to the performance components, my thesis materials will include historical and cultural character research and a reflective journal documenting my rehearsal and production process. My character research and journal will address questions about the characters "choices" and the relationship of their environment to views of personal responsibility and obligations in the play. I will examine the characters' relationships and situations in the play, investigating some of the decisions that these characters make in response to their cultural and social landscapes. The second part of my thesis will include research on three additional female characters from August Wilson's dramatic canon: Aunt Ester Tyler from Gem of the Ocean, Ma Rainey from Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, and Rose from Fences, which will inform my character explorations of Grace and Berniece, and the choices that I make during the rehearsal process in developing their journeys. By reading other plays by Wilson, I endeavor to deepen my understanding of the struggles of African-American women in the twentieth century, and explore how the social and economic status of black women was affected by America's changing political and social climate over several decades. In addition, I will document how my visceral experience of performing the roles of Grace and Berniece relates to my intellectual process of exploring the journeys of Aunt Ester Tyler, Ma Rainey, and Rose.
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Master of Fine Arts (M.F.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Marable, Ingrid, "The Women Of August Wilson And A Performance Study And Analysis Of The Role Of Grace In Wilson's The Piano Lesson" (2009). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 4150.