Gift of the Gorgon Response Paper
The Gift of the Gorgon is a two and a half hour play that I believe is worth seeing because it is exciting, and it kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the entire play. Although it was not just me, the rest of the audience seemed just as captivated as I did as the mesmerizing plot of Peter Shaffer's unfortunate tale unfolded. After the death of the playwright Edward Damson, his son Philip Damson travels to Greece trying to gain permission from his stepmother to first learn, and then write Edward's biography. The past and the present are linked as Helen tells the story of Edward's life, which is very similar to the Greek myth of Athena and Perseus.
One of the best parts of this play was the stone wall located up stage that could literally open up to release the god Athena and her gorgon slaves. This feature really helped give off the god-like feeling that the director wanted the Athena to portray. The wall also offered an interesting way for many entrances, and exits in the play like in the very end when Edward Damson falls off the cliff to his death. Or when Athena appears glide out to the center of the stage which in turn grants her all of the audience’s attention.
Another thing that I particularly enjoyed about this play was the transitions from act one, to act two, to act three. These were memorable for me because of the way the audience was left hanging there wanting to know what was going to happen next. These breaks were basically incorporated into the climax of the play because of how the actors would build up the intensity to the near breaking point and then just end the scene leaving you begging for more insight into the life of Edward Damson.
Now the island that this takes place on would be very difficult to recreate on a mere stage. But, the director effectively used every aspect of the stage, to enhance the visual effects and allow the audience to actually imagine what the scenery could look like. The lighting was pretty dim throughout the play which created an eerie feeling and helped me assume early on that this play was not going to have a happy ending. I also felt like the lighting was well utilized to add give a special chill like effect on the play. Although the...