A Short Response to Welcome to Thebes by Moira Buffini

March 2017.

For a play with so many characters, Welcome to Thebes is easy to follow and contained neatly in the world it presents. The playwright Moira Buffini writes in the style of verse yet in her note claims it is not [verse]. At first I disagreed with this statement—obviously it’s verse, it is written in that style and feels like heightened language—but after seeing the show versus just reading it I have to agree with Buffini: all plays are poetic in some fashion, but the script still retains an air of realism that differs from the way verse is spoken.

I really appreciated the amount of characters and the complexity of them all. Each character served a purpose in propelling the conflict, and story, forward. This is something I’m attempting to replicate in my own play (which also centers around Greek mythology). Something I’m struggling with right now is how to balance each character’s relevance in the progression of the play. Right now, it feels as though things in my play are dragging and falling flat, so I may look further at Welcome to Thebes to see how it managed to do this so well.

Published by Alyssa C.

Writer & theatre artist from Iowa. Currently quarantining in the Pacific Northwest. MA in Intercultural Communication Studies from Shanghai Theatre Academy (expected 2021).

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