My Favorite Plays
I started reading plays with interest when ‘Drama’ became a part of my syllabus for graduation. Since then I have read plays pretty regularly but not as frequently as novels. Reading plays is a different kind of experience and it is a nice addition to my reading lists. Some of my favorite plays so far are:-
1) The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde.
It was reading this play that made me turn to other works of Oscar Wilde. The Importance of Being Earnest is one of the favorite plays because it is funny, witty and the characters are really interesting. It has elements expected of a comedy but it is much more than that with its subtle commentary on societal norms of the time. It is a delightful read which is witty and amusing.
2) Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare.
This might be a rare instance where I saw a movie before reading the book, in this case, the play. As a hopeless romantic, I always wanted to read Romeo and Juliet. When I finally read it, I loved it. The love story is innocent and pure in so many ways because the characters are so young. The events of the play take place over three to six days which meant there was constant action to propel the plot forward. It is sad yet cute love story. I really liked the movie adaptation of Romeo and Juliet which released in 1968.
3) A View from the bridge by Arthur Miller.
A View from the Bridge might not seem as obvious as a choice like A Death of a Salesman does, but it is an interesting play to read. The play is set in the 1950’S Brooklyn community among the second generation Italian immigrants. Eddie, the main character is the tragic hero but at times it can be hard to feel sympathy for him. The characters and the plot are engaging and unpredictable. It is one of my favorite plays.
4) Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett.
It took me a long time to finally finish the play. Honestly, I wasn’t sure if I actually understood it when I was reading it but after I was taught this play, it became clear. It is an absurd play which means exactly what it sounds like. The themes of the play are very meaningful yet are in a way underlying than being in your face. The two main characters Vladimir and Estragon keep waiting day after day for Godot who never arrives. It is an almost perfect example of tragicomedy genre of plays. In all fairness, I loved reading the play but reading it again might be impossible to do.
5) A Doll’s House by Henrik Ibsen.
A Doll’s House by Ibsen is an amazing play. The pace of the plot is good, the characters are interesting and relatable and it shows the reality of life in that century. The main character of the play is Nora, a housewife, who hides the financial troubles faced by her husband. It was a controversial play when it realized because it went against tradition which exactly proves the underlying themes of the play. It is a refreshing play about society, individualism, and family and it is unique especially compared to the time period it is set in. It is must read.
These are my favorite plays that I have read so far. There are many more plays which are sitting on my to-be-read list and eventually I’ll get to them. I have enjoyed these five the most and I hope to make additions to this list by reading more plays.