An analysis and production of the play Pelleas and Melisande



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The problem presented in this type thesis was to produce a classic play, and submit a complete prompt book and analysis of it. This meant the candidate was to select a play which he considered a classic, direct it, east it, design the costumes, scenery, and lighting for it, and in all ways assume the responsibilities inherent in its production. The play selected for presentation was Maurice Maeterlinck's Pelleas and Melisande, which, although written in 1892, is, nevertheless, considered a classic play, according to the more modern interpretation of the word "classic." It is a play representative of the symbolistic school of writing, and is one of Maeterlinck's most impressive works. The source of the play is the latter part of the fifth canto of Dante's Inferno, the same passage which has been treated by such other writers as Boker, Phillips, and D'Annunzio. Maeterlinck's play, however, stands far apart from these other writers' plays in that the story is told not so much through words and actions, but rather through mood and atmosphere which is developed so poignantly. [...]