I responded most to the last piece, being Nick’s, because I felt the character development throughout the piece was not forced. There was a beginning, middle and end that arched the plays’ entirety, where I felt I had a clear understanding of each character’s wants and needs. The dynamics between Ellen and Roderick were clear and concise, something that I felt was lacking in comparison to the plays prior. Also, I felt the intensity of the more dramatic moments were based on characters needs, as oppose to the influences of drama (for the sake of having dramatic moments) itself. The moments where Roderick mentioned wanting to pet Ellen, as he pets a dog in hopes that she would then want to be her friend was a precise, secluded moment into his character, which I felt was previously hinted at through his use of barking whenever his doorbell rang as well as the moments where he felt a need to rely on the ownership of dogs as an excuse for his being absent and/or unavailable. For the concept of peeling back layers as a way to define a character, and find out more about what drives them, I found that Nick’s piece had a well-balanced approach between drama and dialogue, which is something that I’m continuously working with in my pieces.
The play that I’m currently working with seems to rely on the relationships between each character, as well as the weight in their past experiences in comparison to their current situations. The problems of what each character is specifically after, as well as where their voice fits in with the overall concept of the play is what I am constantly grappling with. I am having a hard time allowing each character their space to speak, and more so, what it is they are yearning to get across to the characters around them. The location is set in Hawai’i, specifically North Shore on the island of O’ahu. The area is far away from the influences of town and/or tourism and certain parts of that area on the island lack electricity. The idea of ‘He Hale Kou’ which translates into ‘you have a house’ invites the sense that each character has played a part in building a house on a remote part of an island that they can each return to at any point in their lives, under the condition that only the four of them that built it in the beginning have access to it’s insides. The areas I feel allow the most exploration are about what time period the characters are in, as well as what they will do with/do each other, that will affect the shared space of the house overall.