Mrs Lyons’ and Mrs Johnston’s - Sample Essay
The first song , overture, is played when the twins are being placed in the body bags and being taken away, this is only a piece of music based on long very low notes, however it has low moaning voices in the background which sound very scary and unnerving and add to the feeling of ambiguity at this point. The second song, Marilyn Monroe, portrays the character of Mrs Johnston; it shows that she is very nai?? ve, the song from the beginning talks about her obsession with Marilyn Monroe; this is because she wants to be beautiful just like her.
Marilyn is mentioned in the play several times, this is because the story line is similar to Monroe’s life, she led a happy life but was always aspiring to be more liked and more popular, she got hooked on drugs and fell into depression and then, like Mickey she died. Many of the songs are repeated towards the end of the performance however they are slowed down and the words are changed. The song ‘Kid’s Game’ helps portray the actors as young as possible and makes it more realistic. ‘I got y’ I shot y’ and y’ bloody know I did, these words are shouted, rather than sang, in a very young voice, the music is also very simple here.
The narrator’s singing creates atmosphere in all of his songs however in ‘shoes upon the table’ the words the narrator sings makes us think that he is someone inside Mrs Lyons’ and Mrs Johnston’s head. The song is all about suspicion and what will happen to the two twins when they’re older. The start of this song starts with really slow beats there are six beats and they create a creepy Atmosphere, this music carries on through the part of the dialogue when Mrs Lyons says “you do know what happens to twins that are secretly parted don’t you?
” she then carries on explaining what will happen if either of the twins find out they were separated, the n she finishes by saying (to Mrs Johnston) “you won’t tell anyone about this Mrs Johnston, if you do you will kill them! ” As soon as she says this the narrator sings “shoes upon the table, an a spiders been killed…. etc”. The music here is sudden and precise and it makes you feel on edge and engaged in the feeling of what he is saying. Sound effects are used occasionally in the play e. g. when Mickey is looking for Eddie he shouts for him and sound effects are used to make it sound like ,him shouting ‘Eddie’, is echoing.
When he is shouting it builds up tension in the audience because it makes you think that Eddie has gone away, you feel empathy for Mickey. The gauze at the beginning of the play looked very mysterious because the red light was shone upon it from the top up stage right and this, from where I was sat in the audience, made you feel intimidated because it was so bright. The costume in Blood brothers was a major part of the performance for me. The costumes were not only what people wore they were symbols of the life that they lived. Mickey’s costumes assisted his acting from the very start.
The first time we see him on stage he is wearing a filthy, green, baggy, t-shirt. He is wearing some really old denim shorts, and some basketball style bright red trainers. His costume looks like it is actually years old, not just been filthied with stage make-up etc. His costume is very bright and cheerful. He looks lie most of the other children he is playing with. They all appear to make a fun loving, bright carefree picture without even moving. The costume Mickey wears portrays his age well, he has dirt on the knees, elbows and face, like a seven year old would .
His t-shirt is dirtiest at the bottom where it has been tugged and pulled at. It has also gone baggy where he pulls it over his knees. Mickey’s clothing as a teenager changes rapidly. Before he wore what was given to him (by his on stage mum) however, as a teenager he has more pride and self-consciousness . At around the age of fourteen he wears fitted tight jeans and white t-shirts and hair slicked back with gel. His pristine image costume helps portray his stereotyped 1960’s teenager, drainpipe jeans and white t-shirts.
When Mickey gets into trouble with police and goes to prison he is a totally different person as far as dress sense is concerned. The colours change from bright clean colours to miserable brown and greys. His clothes are extremely loose and convey his feelings of wanting to be hidden. Linda’s clothes at the beginning are bright and cheerful like Mickey’s. She is wearing a red dress and cardigan, these are very clean, and however this will be down to her mother keeping them clean as she was a bit of a ‘tom boy’.
She wore her hair in pigtails and frilly ankle socks. Again, like Mickey, she looked very young. Her materials on her clothes were very smooth; her skirt was very plain and red. Like blood. In all of Linda’s costumes she wore an item of red. This represented and symbolised the blood all the way through. It represented that Linda was the thing which linked Eddie and Mickey together, as a child and as adults. Even though Linda was young her outfit as a child was very feminine and elegant. As a teenager the respective clothing image had gone.
She wore a very short skirt and stiletto heels, this made her look much more vulnerable, and her school shirt was often unbuttoned revealing her teenage chest. She still wore a red bobble in her hair though and her school bag had a red trim on. The amount of red worn was decreasing and this symbolised the blood- brother- hood, too, getting weaker. When Linda went out on a night as a teenager she was, like Mickey, very self conscious, she wore make-up (red lipstick) and platform heels and miniskirt. At 18 Linda wore much less vulnerable clothing.
She wore a pale yellow dress with a red ribbon in her hair. The pale yellow represented her happiness at that time, she no longer had to wear tarty clothes to catch Mickey’s attention she already had it, she could be comfortable in what she wanted, they were in love. When Linda and Mickey’s relationship is at its weakest Linda wears fairly miserable clothes compared to her old, flirtatious, bright colours, she wears dull colours e. g. a brown jumper. The first scene when Mickey and Linda are together is when all of the children are on scene and Mickey says the ‘f word’.
All of the children are shouting at him saying that he will go to hell. Linda chooses to stick up for him above all of the rest of them. Linda has great confidence here, even though she is only 7 she sticks her chest right out and puts her arms out to protect Mickey when he is being picked on by his brother Sammy. Mickey doesn’t have an issue about a girl sticking up for him which, because his acting skills are good here, portrays their age really well. Mickey uses his voice skills to convey his age well.
Mickey-actor Sean Jones – is actually from North Wales so his accent is totally different, he has to learn the Liverpool accent, he talks in a much higher voice to sound like Mickey does and has to talk with more versatile tones than he would normally. Seven year old tend to make their voices higher and lower to make everything they say have more impact on the listener and be exaggerated. Children often talk faster than adults do and without as many pauses for breaths, Mickey carried this off well and he used these skills very effectively to make you believe he was 7, not an actor pretending to be someone who is 7.
Mickey has a lot of respect for his brother Sammy and idolises him. He copies a lot of the actions his brother does. He tries to stand with his feet wide apart and sit in his hips to make him look relaxed like Sammy however it is clear that he is trying to copy Sammy as whenever he copies his characteristics he looks round to see if anyone is noticing him! Mickey is very hyperactive and this is clear by the way he jumps around the stage instead of walking and is also showed by the speed at which he talks.
He is very enthusiastic here, when he is shooting the group of children he is really exaggerating every single movement. Linda is a lot less shy though than Mickey, she has a motherly element to her which shows that she feels she has to take care for Mickey. Throughout her childhood we get the impression that inside her the strength and confidence she has inside her is fighting against the feminist and young girl inside her. Linda is different to the typical 1960’s girl; she didn’t fall into the typical quiet, plain, young girl trap like the rest of those her age did.