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The Playwrights Forum > General > Question & Answer > Magic realism in the theatre?

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Magic realism in the theatre?  Rating:  Rating
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 Posted: Sat Feb 6th, 2016 04:41 am
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RTurco
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Mana: 
Hello everyone!

It's been a while. I come with a question for you: Are there any plays that incorporate elements of magic realism? It's the idea that characters accept magic as part of the fabric of their waking, and otherwise realistic, life.

I was thinking about turning an autobiographical incident into a theatrical piece. Some of you may remember years ago that I tried to turn a painful event in my life into a two-act play. You may remember I was unsuccessful. I'd like to try it again, but this time with elements of magic.

The idea may also work as a short-story, or even a short novel. I'm still keeping that in mind as well.

Best to all you!

RTurco

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 Posted: Sat Feb 6th, 2016 05:58 am
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Edd
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Read my FLOWERS OUT OF SEASON. It is a good example of magic realism.

Trailer for it.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=renM_Oqvg5E

Read it at
http://www.edwardcrosbywells.net/flowers-out-of-season.php

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 Posted: Sun Feb 7th, 2016 06:05 am
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in media res
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edd,

Holy Camoley!!!!

Has it been 9 years since your play was produced in Chicago?!!!!!

Yeesh!!

Best,

IMR

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 Posted: Sun Feb 7th, 2016 08:37 am
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Edd
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Mana: 
I can top that, in media res. It hasn't been produced in 9 years. <sardonic laughter>

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 Posted: Sun Feb 7th, 2016 09:53 am
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RTurco
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I just bought a copy on Stageplays. It's too big a document to read easily on the website, and too many pages to print. Plus I like to support the arts. :)

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 Posted: Sun Feb 7th, 2016 09:09 pm
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Edd
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Mana: 
It's a longish play. ;-)

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 Posted: Sun Aug 14th, 2016 11:02 pm
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dcoyne
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Mana: 
Hi,

Check out the plays of Jose Rivera. He frequently uses magic realism in his plays, and he was mentored by the master of the genre: Gabriel Garcia Marquez.

I hope this helps.

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 Posted: Mon Aug 15th, 2016 12:10 am
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RTurco
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Thanks dcoyne! I'll look into his work. I've since written this piece as a short story and not a play. I think it works better in prose.

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 Posted: Sun Aug 21st, 2016 04:15 am
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Turco,

Great to see your name again.

I like your idea.

I just read this article - LINK BELOW - the other day and was going to post it. Seeing your post seems like a perfect time.

I always suggest just write to get it the freshness of the story out and ON PAPER OR IN A FILE. If you think about twisting and wrangling with a "format" too early, it could become like wrestling like an alligator! You might just get your head twisted around so much, you can't get it out of your *sshole. You are going to have rewrite and rewrite re- write anyway. Just get the story out. (I know you have the story, but look at it afresh.)

It will then grow with it's winding vines from there.

Below is the Article from my favorite site, "Arts and Letters Daily." http://www.aldaily.com

Here is the article and the link:

ARISTOTLE CALLED PLOT "THE FIRST PRINCIPAL." THOUGH MANY REVOLUTIONS HAVE TRIED TO REPLACE IT WITH INTELLECTUAL OR AESTHETIC DAZZLE, PLOT ALWAYS RETURNS...

http://www.vulture.com/2016/08/is-it-story-that-makes-us-read.html


Good recommendation by DCoyne and edd. edd's play is wonderful.

Reading it is so vastly better than the production I saw in Chicago years ago.

The actors were just not up to the material. (edd already knows how I felt at the time.) Would love to see some brilliant actors do it.


best,

IMR

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 Posted: Mon Aug 22nd, 2016 05:06 am
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RTurco
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In medias res,

I liked that article, I especially appreciated the literary movement timeline.

I have a related pondering:

A prose writing professor I had told me that in the 21st century, you don't have to worry about character conflict in your fiction. In my mind, character conflict, internal and/or external, is the essential element of a plot. When someone is bored by a story, I bet it's because it's lacking in a developing conflict which means little action. But that's just me coming from the time I spent learning how to write plays, and read plays, and then write some myself.

Is conflict as an indispensable basis for plot merely a playwriting thing, or really a general fiction thing?

Best,
RTurco

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 Posted: Mon Aug 22nd, 2016 10:03 am
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Turco,

Go to this list:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_playwrights_from_the_United_States

Now, are you going to pay attention to this list?

Or are you going to pay attention to your prose writing professor?

I'll bet every great writer in any form, rolled over in his/her grave when they heard him/her say that Pearl of Wisdom.

I'll hang with Aristotle, Sophocles, Moliere, Shakespeare, Wilde, O'Neill, Williams, Arthur Miller, Lillian Hellman, and hundreds of other more current/contemporary novelists and playwrights anyday!!!!!

I have listened to enough rambling "free form great stories" from drunks in bars over the years to realize great stories - whether novel or play or screenplay - have a structure to them. Not that a drunk can't be entertaining on occasion, but I'll stick with the Masters anyday for my art forms. On occason, I'll buy a drunk a drink. But for my storytelling, I'll buy a book or a play.

As several of my professors used to say, "Study the Masters."

Or...google ANY kind of list of good to great writers you want, and you will find the same thing.

Best,

IMR

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 Posted: Tue Aug 30th, 2016 03:56 am
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RTurco
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IMR,

I agree! The masters are important. Where would we be without them?

Best,
RTurco

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