The main task of an actor, director, or designer is to get excited about the play, and play analysis is a means of organizing the process of searching for this excitement. (Semyon Bulba, Faculty of Scenography, Moscow Art Theatre School)

What Is Formalist Play Analysis?

Although some readers may often have heard the term formal, they may not have a firm idea of what it means. This is understandable because it has taken on various meanings over time. Formal may be associated with the practice of doing something for appearance’s sake as in a formal wedding. Or it may convey a feeling of primness and stiffness. Maybe readers harbor an unconscious feeling that formal means fixed, authoritarian, and inflexible. All these meanings have ...

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