After Miss Julie

Hi QEGS drama students!

Use this blog to record your responses to After Miss Julie.

What are your 10 most effective moments from the production?

What 3 moments did you find less impressive?

Was it Naturalism of Realism?

Did you empathize with John, Julie or Christine?

What effect did the lighting and sound create?

Did the setting of election eve 1945 work for you?

How did the theatre space influence you response to the piece?

James’ After Miss Julie Blog


5 thoughts on “After Miss Julie

  1. My favourite part of the play was when Christine left to go to bed. This would seem a small part of the play, but was actually a very significant turning point. Christine had previously fallen asleep in the corner of the room and Miss Julie had rudely woken her up, so she chose to go to bed. When Christine was in the room, John was hesitant to fulfil Miss Julie’s wishes, however as soon as Christine left, his attitude changed and he was instantly more flirtatious. Within minutes of Christine leaving, John had moved in for a kiss, but Miss Julie slapped him and he backed away. This change in the atmosphere is what caused the “shenanigans” to occur, and is the pivotal point of the play.

  2. Well, obviously I enjoyed the show, everyone did, but as I’m sat in the ILC at the moment and Mr O wants us to write a little and comment about such things about the production as to what I liked best of the show or didn’t like best of the show, either way I’m going to start writing about it now. Henceforth, I decided to write about the use of the set in After Miss Julie, and I have to say i found it entirely effective whether it was the use of the stairs, the lighting and involvement of the audience or the Eco-friendly set that was produced in an attempt to save the environment and not produce carbon emissions!
    Well, we all walked in, intrigued by how we actually got the chance to walk through the set and design of the 45′ kitchen, it almost proved to me, or us, that what we see on the stage isn’t a screen show or something that isn’t real, it IS real and the audience given the chance to walk through and almost touch the things that we see just makes the experience all the more real for us. Personally, I thought that the fact that there was minimal use of set used, to show the difference in setting as to what we are so accustomed to now, and also because of how environmentally friendly it is. Plain wooden table, and simple side dressers and a real arguer on which Christine cooks makes it seem so natural and effective. Of course, to tie in with that, I personally enjoyed how we could sense everything happening in the show, from the realistic sounds, to the smell of the coffee beans as John frantically tried to grind them on the grinder. I think we’d all agree it made the ENTIRE experience SO much more enjoyable and entertaining and just entirely more realistic… almost like real-life, and though we’re distanced from our own lives as we watch the play, it both distances us and at the same time draws us in and completely engrosses us to relate to it! Brilliant experience. But aside from this, the most unusual thing that straight away stood out to me as we walked through the ‘auditorium’ was the positioning of the seats! I mean, they were in the most strange arrangement like a rectangle so the scene could be viewed from three different angles sort of… though I don’t know whether I found it effective or not. It was an interesting design, don’t get me wrong, but I just felt that for the people sitting at the side of the stage, they wouldn’t have had the same entertaining experience as the people sitting at the front of the stage. They would have had a better view, but the people at the side might not have been able to see as well and therefore their experience would have been brought down.
    The Young Vic is well known for being refurbished in 2006 and was henceforth known to be an ‘eco-friendly’ environment in every show they produce and try to produce as little carbon emissions as possible! Obviously this is a brilliant scheme, meaning fewer trees are destroyed and cut down and environments aren’t destroyed so much, and the like, so we benefit from it also. In the programme, they made it clear what they were trying to do, and even the actors such as Natalie Dormer, even said it had affected their view on the world since they had been involved with the Young Vic theatre company and After Miss Julie, which just goes to show from their set and scheme of things, that if people come to see the show and see what they were trying to do, more and more people would have been affected and it would therefore make the world a better place!
    So overall, I think the production was excellent in terms of the set and production of the set and they own unique design of things, and it made an enjoyable and entertaining performance for me personally, and I’m sure everyone else would agree with me!

  3. ‘The Young Vic’s Maria is a space in which there is nowhere for the actors to hide, and which requires absolute truthfulness. The only lies exposed in Natalie Abrahami’s compulsively watchable revival of Patrick Marber‘s take on Strindberg are the ones that the characters tell themselves’ (The Guardian) With so little space at their disposal, every square meter of performance space was utilised to the max; the stairs in particular allowed the performers to play with staus, power and authority. Allow me to explain… The first time we meet Miss Julie she appears at the top of the stairs, exuding class in a blue floral dress; this is perhaps indicative of her blue-blood! Christine and Jean stand to attention and seem to both admire and envy their mistress as they literally do look up to her. The stairs seemed to be sacred and solely for Miss Julie; perhaps they symbolised the social heirachy; she was at the top of it but was equally happy ‘climbing down’ it. John only travels up the stairs when being lead to the dance by Miss Julie; he needs the permission, the guidance of his superior in order for him to ‘rise up in the world’. Similarly, the almost clandestine kiss between the two leads takes place on the stairs; perhaps the director is suggesting that love can transcend social ties, we are the same in love as it were. Conversely, one could argue that only in the darkness, out of sight can love between inferior citizens takes place; this kind of love is wrong and is socially unacceptable hence the darkness. After a sexually charged encounter, Miss Julie traverses the stairs and leaves her bag behind; instead of climbing the stairs to return it to her, John holds it in the air making her bend down to get it. Now, the director could be suggesting that women are under men’s control; they fall at the feet of men. Conversely, by Miss Julie kneeling, she is imprisoned behind the bannister; she is imprisoned, like women of the time, and seeks liberation. Or perhaps this image is indicative of a caged femme fatale, a temptress ready to seduce her victim. In terms of narrative, John starts to realise that he can control Miss Julie; his ostensible fears regarding class and romance seem to be slowly being eradicated. Now, the first and only time Christine exits via the stairs is arguably a poignant moment in the play. After intruding on a heated moment between the central characters, she realises that they plan to run away together. She belittles Jean and Julie and leaves with the money and her dignity in tact. Perhaps the director is saying that women who know their place have status in society; they are reserved, controlled and don’t succumb to temptation; the upper classes he feel they have the right to revel in and exploit their power are just as menial and insignificant as the lower classes. Conversely it could be poetic licence; Christine is the victim of this love affair but takes the moral high ground, belittles the belittlers and hence, she leaves with her head held high. Now, John ran up the stairs when Miss Julie appeared with her hat boxes and dresses, ready to depart with her lover. Now he has the power, boundaries have been transcended, destroyed, and man has control over the woman once again.

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