Shoe Horn Sonata

958 Words4 Pages
The Shoe Horn Sonata-
The Shoe Horn Sonata provides an insight into the lives of two women who were made prisoners of war by the Japanese and explores the little known and horrific conditions and events the women endured. With the use of distinctively visual techniques, John Misto brings Bridie and Sheila’s experience vividly to life. Through the use of projected images, sound, music and symbolism; the horrors of war, survival and resilience are portrayed throughout the drama.

Misto uses an array of projected images on stage to illustrate the horrors of war to the audience. The photographs projected behind the women, as they retell their struggles, supports their stories by transporting them and the audience back into the past and
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Although a humorous part in the play, it displays their wants and needs for survival. As the women form a choir within the camp, the shoehorn takes on an essential role in the women’s existence. It is used as a metronome, driving the music, lifting the spirits of each woman and emotionally allowing them to rise above the deprivation and horror around them. This notion is enhanced with the dialogue “together we made this glorious sound that rose above the camp – above the jungle – above the war – rose and rose and took us with it. Fifty voices set us free”. Most predominantly the shoe horn becomes a symbol of the pain and shame Sheila held for 50 years and the sacrifice she was willing to make in order to save a friends life. Once the shoe horn is returned to Bridie, it becomes a symbol of the women’s redemption of friendship and whipes out the pain and suffering they both had felt since the completion of the war. The symbolism throughout the drama portrays to the audience that in various situations the women used what they had in order to survive and carry on with their lives.

Misto uses distinctively visual techniques through the drama to portray to the audience the experiences and feelings Bridie and Shelia felt throughout their tribulation. With the use of projected images, sound effects, music and symbolism, Misto displays the horrors of war, resilience and survival tactics of the women and aims at strengthening the knowledge and appreciation of the women who

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