On May 18th, the Broadway witnessed the latest adaptation of the dystopian world of 1984 book. Producers decided to spare no gory detail in their work. As a consequence, the result leaves a massive impact on audience similarly to what the book can do to readers. The stage became the place for torture and violence only a totalitarian apparatus is capable of. However, even onlookers adopted a squeamish attitude under the influence of such a Broadway adaptation, and some of them even fainted.
George Orwell’s Work Is a Depiction of a Totalitarian System at Its Peak
The book of 1984 represents the future George Orwell imagined in case the totalitarian system that started during his time got hold of the entire world. In this fictional scenario, the Big Brother is watching every moment in the life of all citizens and makes sure everyone is devoid of free thinking, personality, feelings, and personal ideas.
His personal agenda is put into action through nonstop surveillance, propaganda, and brainwashing strategies. As a consequence, citizens are kept under control while the inner political theater robs them of money and any rebellious thoughts.
The Broadway Adaptation Made Audience Beg Actors to Stop
Robert Icke and Duncan Macmillan are the writer and director of this violent Broadway adaptation. They stated that their mission was to bring to the stage the same feeling of perpetual horrendous atmosphere that describes the book.
The climax point when some audience members even beg the actors to stop is a torture scene. The main character, Winston Smith, enters the infamous Room 101 at the pressure of Big Brother himself who attempts to break the spirit of this rebel. The man is then beaten, and his tormentor straps a cage of rats on his head. The moment the man receives painful electric shocks, he addresses the audience and calls them the reason for his suffering.
The play seems to reach its goal, namely that of deterring people from ever allowing any totalitarian system to take hold of their lives. The audience was reportedly so appalled by the representation that some of them fainted and even vomited.
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