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dc.contributor.advisorYoung, Stuart Barton
dc.contributor.authorMetzger, Marc Michael George
dc.date.available2014-03-19T22:32:42Z
dc.date.copyright2014
dc.identifier.citationMetzger, M. M. G. (2014). Laughter Through Tears - The Art of Serious Comedy (Thesis, Master of Arts). University of Otago. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/10523/4695en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10523/4695
dc.description.abstractThe Deerstalkers’ Ball is a play about a world in transition. It is an observation of the changes that have taken place in New Zealand’s rural south over the past twenty years, largely as a result of the increasing dominance of the dairying industry. The main narrative is set over two months in 1993 and tells the story of a sheep-farming family who will eventually be ‘displaced’ by the new order. It is set against the backdrop of preparations for a ball – a tradition that will soon be consigned to the past. While there are serious themes at the heart of the play, its overall tone is intended to be comic. Indeed, the most significant challenge in writing the play was achieving a successful balance between comedy and pathos. The exegesis in this thesis focuses principally on this issue, using the development of The Deerstalkers’ Ball as an opportunity to explore the sub-genre of what might be called ‘serious comedy’ – an approach typified by Ivan Turgenev’s A Month in the Country, Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard and plays by writers who have followed in their footsteps. The exegesis sets out to identify and define the characteristics and techniques of serious comedy. In addition to this investigation of tone, it looks at the use of multiple timeframes to make a story set in the recent past relevant to a contemporary audience and the opportunity this creates to balance comedy with pathos. The exegesis also discusses the elliptical nature of dramatic dialogue and the value of understatement in creating comic and dramatic effects and provides an extended discussion of the social and political background and themes of The Deerstalkers’ Ball.
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/pdf
dc.language.isoen
dc.publisherUniversity of Otago
dc.rightsAll items in OUR Archive are provided for private study and research purposes and are protected by copyright with all rights reserved unless otherwise indicated.
dc.subjectserious comedy
dc.subjectChekhov comedy
dc.subjectTurgenev comedy
dc.subjectdark comedy
dc.subjectcomedy of character and situation
dc.subjectcomedy and pathos
dc.subjectcomic irony
dc.subjectsubtext in dramatic dialogue
dc.subjectdramatic irony in comedy
dc.subjectsubtext and understatement
dc.subjectcomedy in naturalistic drama
dc.subjectA Month in the Country comedy
dc.subjectThe Cherry Orchard comedy
dc.titleLaughter Through Tears - The Art of Serious Comedy
dc.typeThesis
dc.date.updated2014-03-19T21:36:43Z
dc.language.rfc3066en
thesis.degree.disciplineTheatre Studies
thesis.degree.nameMaster of Fine Arts
thesis.degree.grantorUniversity of Otago
thesis.degree.levelMasters
otago.openaccessOpen
otago.evidence.presentYes
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