Analysis of Margarita

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					CTH-101                                                              Megan Kupres

       “The Constitution only guarantees the American people the right to pursue happiness.

You have to catch it yourself,” stated Benjamin Franklin. What is happiness, and can it actually

be attained? Some people spend their entire lives searching for this thing, without ever actually

knowing what it is they are searching for. Two fundamental necessities of mankind are inclusion

and affection. Bye Bye Margarita—using various theatrical elements of staging, lighting, and

acting—illustrates the struggle of one woman who longs for both, but when she cannot find

either, seeks more sinful alternatives for pleasure.

       My analysis may be a little far-reached, but there was something about this tragedy, about

Margarita’s character in particular, that captured my attention. The performance portrayed her as

somewhat of a homewrecker or slut, but when the Professor mentioned to the other two men that

she was bulimic, I immediately knew. Margarita was beautiful and sexy. Her movements were

mesmerizing; her gaze was positively captivating. Ostensibly, she had it all, but really she was

weak and vulnerable and longing for affection. In all actuality, she led a troubled existence.

Bulimia is a mental disorder, most commonly the result of feelings of abandonment or

insignificance. Margarita, for whatever reason—audience members were never fully informed of

her situation—felt unloved and was plagued by the fact that she could not find enough affection

to satisfy her desire for inclusion in someone else’s life. Thus, she succumbed to sin, which is

easier, and averted to other methods of fulfillment: a high school drop-out at the local bar, a

priest who was in anguish over the sins he had committed, and a college professor who already

had a history of committing adultery with a student. She found momentary pleasure or

satisfaction in other people who were also weak and susceptible to her manipulation. However,

clearly wasn’t happy. The playwright raises a very important aspect of human existence with
CTH-101                                                               Megan Kupres

this performance: Human beings have weaknesses and are susceptible to sin, which can cause

one to behave in inexplicable ways.

       This is a somewhat profound subject. Without some knowledge of purgatory or a

religious background, the average viewer probably would not understand the play’s underlying

message. The staging for the play was incredibly useful for maintaining a sense of coherence.

This play used simultaneous staging—elements from both the church and bar scenes were

constantly on stage and visible to the audience. While lighting was used to give audience

members a place to focus, this type of staging helped to foreshadow events. This allowed

viewers to have an easier time placing the scenes together with minimal amount of pauses to

adjust the scenery. The stage resembled more of a tiny community going about its day rather

than separate locations and individual scenes. In addition, it is very useful to have the alter and

other elements of the church ever-present in the background because it reinforces the play’s

underlying religious focus. Regardless of where she goes or who Margarita is with, the church

staging reminds audience members that all her actions are being reviewed by God. There were

three ubiquitous performers that stood by Margarita. Not only did these actors serve as her

deciders in purgatory during her final moments on stage, but they also may have served as a

representation of the omnipresent judgment and pressure that she felt while living.

       Also in an attempt to make the play’s actions more applicable to the audience, the

prologue was a combination rap and beat box performance by all the actors. A gospel

performance would have been much less interesting and would not have captured the audience’s

attention quite as well. Immediately, the audience knew there was something special about

Margarita. All the men she affected introduced themselves and shared their experiences. This

allowed one to comprehend the amount of lust, pain, and regret she was able to conjure up in
CTH-101                                                               Megan Kupres

these men. These emotions were further intensified with the fact that it was presented in song

rather than individual monologues, which would have been somewhat redundant. The entire play

had the potential to be incredibly redundant overall—just one more guy that Margarita was able

to charm, causing her to fall further into sin—but the director chose to present it with a climatic

structure. The prologue informed the audience that something happened—or rather someone

positively mystifying had entered their lives. However, it wasn’t until the play progressed that

the actions of all their pasts began to unfold and all the transgressions Margarita had committed

reached full force, when finally. In the end, the weight of everything she had done became too

much, and she broke down.

       Dynasty Huckleby did an outstanding job Margarita. Out of all the other actors, her

performance is the one that struck me the most. She was able to embody every aspect of her

character—she was Margarita. Watching her movements and hearing her words across the stage,

I could feel the sensations that she sent down the spines of the men, and I could sense her pain as

she looked into the eyes of all the people she had affected. She exuded passion, which made up

for the mediocre performances of the other performers around her.

       Margarita led a promiscuous life, but for purposes that went beyond anything that the

average person could understand. On the surface she has it all—beauty, grace, charm—but it’s

all merely a mask to hide the fact that something darker is lurking in her soul. Through various

aspects of staging, lighting, and acting, Bye Bye Margarita showcases how the lack of

fundamental human desires can lead one down a path of sin and merely momentary pleasure.

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