Discuss the Visual Aural and Special Elements of Equus
Uploaded by Appleman on Oct 12, 2007
Discuss the visual, aural and special elements of Equus
The lighting in Equus changes throughout the play. For most of the play, the square is lit dimly, but it always brightens as Alan enters. When Hester and Jill enter the square, the lighting becomes warmer. This shows the audience that these characters are gentle, loving characters who are warm at heart.
The main focal point of the lighting is Alan. When Dysart or any of the other characters are talking about Alan when he is sat his bench, a spot light settles on him to highlight him. This tells the audience that Alan is the most important part of the play – even when he isn’t on the stage.
Lighting is also used to help set the scene. In Scene 29, Alan tells Dysart the story of the incident in the cinema. At the start of this story, the lights dim, creating the illusion of being n the cinema.
The light also helps to create a mood in some of the scenes. For example, in Scene 34, the stage blackens just before Alan blinds the horses. This tells us that something terrible is about to happen. Then, in Scene 35, the light grows gradually brighter as Dysart is comforting Alan and telling him that it's all over. This shows us that Dysart is like Alan's hero – he's cured Alan of his psychological problems and now he should be able to lead a normal life.
This non-naturalistic layout is effective because it allows the use of non-naturalistic horses and requires the audience to use their imaginations a little. Both of these help to create the illusion of being in a fantasy, making the play seem more like it's in someone's head, in much the same way that Equus is in Alan's head.
This non-naturalistic layout is better than a naturalistic layout mainly because of the space it uses. It would be very difficult to fit stables, Dysart's office, Frank and Dora’s front room, a cinema, Alan's bedroom and the road Jill and Alan walk back to the stables along all in one theatre, and the non-naturalistic layout is easily transformed into all of these, sometimes just by changing the lighting. Also, a naturalistic setting would require naturalistic horses, which would also be difficult to fit in a theatre.
This is how I would imagine Alan and Dysart to be dressed. Alan is on the left,...