Station Eleven Essay

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The Necessity of Art in Station Eleven Ever since I can remember I have loved theatre. It’s been a constant presence, and an important touchstone, in my life. However, for as long as I’ve loved theatre, I have also been ridiculed for my enjoyment of it. As a child, my interest was tolerated as something precious, something I was bound to grow out of. My parents and teachers would sit in the audience, clapping and cheering me on, all the while thinking to themselves “I bet she’ll make a great lawyer one day.” They thought, like most of society, theatre was an unnecessary luxury; a pastime for the rich and powerful, for those who didn’t have to worry about putting food on the table, or clothes on their children’s backs. Certainly not…show more content…
We all want to be remembered. For us it is easy: a voice message, a photograph, even a tweet, ensures that our existence will be recorded for posterity. But for Kirsten and her peers, living without such luxuries, it is increasingly difficult to make a lasting impression. They perform because it allows them to live on through the characters they embody or the music they play, which will endure long after they are gone, and the audiences that will remember them. How apt it is that Kirsten’s company, The Travelling Symphony, specializes in Shakespeare, who best describes this phenomena in the final scene of Hamlet. As Hamlet lies dying in Horatio’s arms, he tells him “Absent thee from felicity awhile, and in this harsh world draw thy breath in pain, to tell my story.” (V.ii. 345-347). Knowing that he will be unable to tell his story himself, in his last moments Hamlet bequeaths it to his best friend, in the hopes that Horatio will ensure that he is suitably remembered. This summer, I read a book entitled Stay, Illusion: The Hamlet Doctrine by Simon Critchley and Jamieson Webster, a series of essays that explore characters and themes in Hamlet. In one chapter, Critchley and Webster explore Hamlet’s dying wish, suggesting that Horatio might choose to put the story of Hamlet on as a play. This struck me as fitting, a reminder that art is a form of expression, one

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