Harry Potter – A Story with Opposing Symbols

In middle school, I would read the Harry Potter series religiously on my way to and from school on the bus. I was fascinated with everything about the books, whether that be the plot, the characters, etc. Due to this and the fact that I tend to reread the same books over and over again instead of reading new material, I have had the chance to analyze and grow a deeper understanding of its possible symbols.

The Dursleys
Doran, Sarah. “The Dursleys weren’t as bad as you think…”. RadioTimes.com. May 16, 2016. https://www.radiotimes.com/movies/the-dursleys-werent-as-bad-as-you-think/. Accessed June 17, 2021.

After Harry’s parents were murdered by Lord Voldemort, he had to go live with his only remaining relatives: his uncle Vernon, aunt Petunia and cousin Dudley, otherwise known as the Dursleys. Not only are they muggles, but the Dursleys fear and despise magic. That is the primary reason why they keep Harry in the dark about his true identity, make up scenarios about how his parents died and do everything in their power to prevent him from going to Hogwarts. They are incapable of growing as human beings to accept Harry for who he is or to even try to look at things from a different perspective in an attempt to support him. The Dursleys are the type of people that destroy creativity in the world and prevent its potential change. They are a symbol of conservatism, narrow-mindedness, and lack of imagination.

The Wizarding World
“Hogsmeade Station”. Movie World Map. https://www.movieworldmap.com/filming-locations/hogsmeade-train-station/. Accessed June 17, 2021.

The Wizarding World, on the other hand, symbolizes imagination, possibility, and escape. Once Harry finally has an opportunity to read his letter, accepting him into Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, he doesn’t need to give it a second thought. In fact, he immediately leaves with Hagrid to Diagon Alley. It truly is his getaway from the Dursleys and his life that he loathes. As he soon realizes, there are not any boundaries in the Wizarding World. Flying on broomsticks, avoiding Peeves, taming dragons, attending Defence Against the Dark Arts classes, and using Time-Turners are but some of the many magical aspects that make it so special and bring it to life. It pushes what is believed to be surreal, mythical, or impossible.    

Significance
“My collection of the Harry Potter books”.

What I find interesting about these two symbols is their contrast in one another, how they are practically opposing. In most literature, there are not many examples of symbolism that counter each other’s ideas. In my opinion, it is compelling to see that, especially when the two things in question are a group of people and a place. Not only are they both recurring during the entire series but they both have deep and powerful meanings. In addition, since the Dursleys and the Wizarding World represent opposite ideas, this enhances the effect of both symbols as individuals.

As readers, we often interpret different characters, objects, or places to be symbols. It might not have been intended by the author but there is nothing wrong with discovering them to magnify your reading adventure. As you have seen with my personal experience, the Dursleys and the Wizarding World are two valuable symbols in the Harry Potter series.

The truth about gloves in « Frozen »!

I know what you are thinking… A blog about another Disney movie! But honestly, you can’t go wrong with Disney; symbolism is hidden in all of their movies. Today, I’m going to talk about a piece of clothing that was easily overlooked in « Frozen ». The significance of the gloves.

Elsa’s Gloves

I believe that for Elsa, the gloves act as a wall, hiding her true self from the rest of the world and thus acting as the source of her self-doubt. That’s a big statement, I know. But bear with me and you’ll understand how it fits. The first time we see gloves on Elsa in the film is when her father puts them on her to help her control her powers. As he does this, he says, » Conceal it, don’t feel it, don’t let it show ». From a young age, she learns to use the gloves to hide her powers.

Elsas Dad putting gloves on her in Frozen
Elsa wearing gloves for the first time. GIF. WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT THE GLOVES IN FROZEN. OH MY DISNEY, 2016. Web. 17 June 2021. <https://ohmy.disney.com/movies/2016/02/06/gloves-frozen/>.

Another time we see Elsa wearing gloves is at her coronation when she has to take them off for part of the ceremony. We learn that taking off her gloves makes it harder for her to control her powers. This supports the idea that the gloves act as a shield behind which she hides so as not to alert others to her true nature.

Elsa putting her gloves back on in Frozen
Elsa quickly putting her gloves back on after the ceremony. GIF. WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT THE GLOVES IN FROZEN. OH MY DISNEY, 2016. Web. 17 June 2021. <https://ohmy.disney.com/movies/2016/02/06/gloves-frozen/>.

So what do you guys think happened when Anna took one of her sisters gloves in a desperate attempt to stop her sister from closing the castle gates? It doesn’t take long for Elsa’s powers to shoot out of her hands. Everyone was afraid, her biggest nightmare had become reality. So she runs away, and while singing the famous song « Let it go », she takes off the second glove and lets it float away in the wind. I know it’s dramatic, but it’s very symbolic. You see, at that point, she no longer needs to hide who she really is, she is free to be herself. Everything she was afraid of happened and that set her free; the fact that she threw her other glove to the wind is just a visual representation of her literally throwing away what was holding her back.

Elsa rips off her glove in Frozen
Elsa throwing her glove. GIF. WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT THE GLOVES IN FROZEN. OH MY DISNEY, 2016. Web. 17 June 2021. <https://ohmy.disney.com/movies/2016/02/06/gloves-frozen/>.

And what about Hans?

Hans is another person on whom we see gloves. The only time he takes off his gloves in the film is when he announces that he is going to kill Anna (which, I must say, was a very big plot twist). For this reason, in Hans’ case, we can say that his gloves also act as a shield, hiding his true murderous nature from everyone else. When he leaves Anna for dead, he puts his gloves back on. It is as if he puts his mask back on so that people do not know who he really is.

Hans puts glove back on in Frozen
Hans putting his gloves back on. GIF. WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT THE GLOVES IN FROZEN. OH MY DISNEY, 2016. Web. 17 June 2021. <https://ohmy.disney.com/movies/2016/02/06/gloves-frozen/>.

Parallel between why gloves were worn in the past and why Elsa wore them in the movie

According to Fashion Editor, in the past “Women wore gloves to protect themselves from disease and to keep their hands soft”. This was also the case with Elsa. I’m not talking about soft hands or diseases, but rather the gloves used as protection. The gloves protected people from Elsa’s powers.

“For women who had rough hands from manual labor, gloves were a way to hide their hands, especially at church or other social gatherings”. Essentially, they allowed them to look more “proper”. In the film, Elsa wears gloves when she is in the castle. Thus, in the film, gloves may also represent etiquette and compliance with social norms.

Vintage Gloves History- 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930 1940, 1950, 1960
1950s Gloves. Digital image. Vintage Gloves History- 1900, 1910, 1920, 1930 1940, 1950, 1960. VINTAGE DANCER, 24 May 2016. Web. 17 June 2021. <https://vintagedancer.com/vintage/vintage-gloves-styles-1900-to-1960s/>.

In conclusion, Disney has done it again. Only by looking closely at the details of the film will it become clear that the gloves in « Frozen » are used by the characters to hide their true nature. And for me, the fact that there is a small parallel between why the gloves were worn in the past and the meaning of why Elsa wore them makes the film all the more rich. Have you noticed other forms of symbolism in Disney films?

Sources

Oh My Disney. « We Need to Talk About the Gloves in Frozen. » Oh My Disney. DISNEY, 14 Apr. 2016. Web. 17 June 2021. < We Need to Talk About the Gloves in Frozen | Oh My Disney>.

Editor, Fashion. « History of Gloves in Fashion and Society. » Fashionintime.org. 07 Jan. 2021. Web. 17 June 2021. < History of Gloves in Fashion and Society – fashionintime.org>.

The significance of the deer in « Get Out »

I feel like we’ve all seen or at least heard of « Get Out ». Well, if somehow you haven’t seen it, Get Out was a horror/thriller that was a massive hit back in 2017. To quickly summarize, this film was about a young Black man, Chris, who decides to visit his white girlfriend’s parents for a weekend getaway. This seemingly innocent trip takes a turn for the worst as Chris finds out dark secrets about his Girlfriend’s family. But we’re not here to talk all day about the amazing plot of the movie, instead, we’re here to talk about a reoccurring symbol: The deer. In this blog, I’ll explain the significance of the deer and its different interpretations throughout the film. Without further ado, let’s get started.

Wilkinson, Alissa. “Get Out Is a Horror Film about Benevolent Racism. It’s Spine-Chilling.” Vox, 25 Feb. 2017, www.vox.com/culture/2017/2/24/14698632/get-out-review-jordan-peele.

The first time we see a deer is when Chris and Rose are on their way up to her parent’s house, where they hit a deer. Chris is very upset by the sight of the dead deer, as it brings to mind his mother, who died in a hit-and-run accident. For Chris, the deer symbolizes loss, helplessness, and his mother death. When they arrive at her parent’s house, Dean Armitage, Rose’s father, talks about deers saying that they are taking over everything and they need to be killed. He uses a very angry tone to describe his desire to get rid of the deer in the area. Later in the film, when Chris is strapped to a chair in the basement, he sees a stuffed deer’s head on the wall. It is at this point that the deer symbolizes vulnerability and one’s dominance over another. Chris, like the deer, has become the victim. The deer is a trophy for the Armitages, in the same way, that it becomes clear Chris is. For the Armitage family, deers are symbols of unwanted visitors to be hunted. There is a parallel between how Dean perceives deer and how he perceives black people. He feels entitled to hunt both of them, and then keep them as trophies of his dominance. 

“Get Out (2017).” The Feast in Visual Arts and Cinema, virtualfeast.net/cinematic-feasts/get-out-2017. Accessed 14 June 2021.

The way these 2 sides perceive deer reflects their character in this film. For Chris, the deer symbolizes victimhood and vulnerability. On the other hand, for Dean, they represent something to be hunted. That is the way they perceive deer, which translates into how they act towards each other. Dean sees deer and Chris as an unwanted being who is to be hunted, while Chris sees deer as vulnerability and helplessness, which is how he feels in this situation that he’s been put in.

To conclude, Get Out was a fantastic horror movie with multiple examples of symbolism, the most evident one being the reoccurring deer. This symbol represents different things to different characters but still attaches additional meaning to the deer, enriching the comprehension of the movie.

Source

Wikipedia contributors. “Get Out.” Wikipedia, 12 June 2021, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Get_Out.

Helpful strategies to produce your best oral communications

I am fairly certain you have all heard someone say “communication is key” at some point throughout your lives. The reality is, they are absolutely right. However, many people find it hard to communicate with others. Luckily, there are many different types of communication. One in particular that we, students, are challenged to develop is oral/oral-visual communication. Some of you may be wondering, what is exactly is oral communication? Well, Harappa education states the following:

“Oral communication is communicating with spoken words. It’s a verbal form of communication where you communicate your thoughts, present ideas, and share information. Examples of oral communication are conversations with friends, family or colleagues, presentations and speeches”

Throughout the past few months of Boussole, we have completed a PPT presentation, a speech, a reportage/campaign video, and a play, which all required us to challenge our oral communication skills. Luckily, through trial and error, I have found a few strategies that I found helpful in producing oral-visual communications and I am ready to share them with you all. 

“Four Types of Communication.” Pinterest, Buzzle, 2020, https://www.pinterest.ca/pin/502644008384286687/

When producing oral communications such as a presentation, for example, it is very important that you organize and prepare the structure of your presentation beforehand. If you try to go into a presentation without knowing what you want to say it will be very easy for you to stutter, get off track, or even blank. Everything will come out as a jumble of words and your ideas will be incoherent and possibly inconsistent. In addition, I have found that it is much more stressful going into the presentation without preparing the structure of your presentation beforehand because you have no idea how or when you want to bring up different topics during your presentation.

As an example, imagine that you are preparing a presentation about dolphins. You may already know that you want to speak about their behavior, their evolution, their anatomy, and their relationship with humans, however, if you don’t organize your ideas, the public will have a much harder time understanding each of the topics you are trying to educate them on.  Therefore, setting the structure of your presentation beforehand is very important. You can do this by preparing a document with bullet points that lay out the order of everything you are planning to speak about. This could look like the following: 

My next strategy is to practice as much as possible. This could mean practicing by yourself in front of a mirror, practicing in front of others such as parents, siblings, or friends, or even just practicing in your head throughout the day (while you brush your teeth for example). This is essential because going into a presentation without having had test runs isn’t ideal. Sometimes when you practice you find that the structure of your presentation may not work, or certain things need to be adjusted. Also, when you practice aloud or in your head you get more comfortable with the presentation so when you go to do it everything goes much more smoothly, you’re more confident, more comfortable, less stressed/worried and your overall outcome will be far superior. 

Leonard, Jayne. “How to stop or reduce a stutter.” Medical News Today, 9 Sept. 2019, https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/

To summarize, I find that organizing and preparing the structure of your presentation beforehand as well as practicing in your head, in front of a mirror, friends or family are the strategies I find most helpful in producing oral and oral-visual communications. I strongly suggest you all try these strategies out for yourselves because who knows, they might just be beneficial to you all as well. Of course, everyone is different, and these strategies may not be work on you but, there’s no harm in trying. If you have any additional strategies that you believe could benefit others, feel free to leave a comment below and share them with us all! 

Source:

“The Importance Of Oral Communication.” Harappa.education, 26 Dec. 2020, https://harappa.education/harappa-diaries/oral-communication-examples-types-and-process

Public Speaking: Cringe or Based?

Oral presentations, are, unfortunately, an essential part of every student’s life. It is necessary for everyone to learn how to speak out loud in front of a group and share information in a way that is efficient and easy to understand. There are, of course, many different skills that go into an oral presentation; volume and clarity of voice, visual support and body language are all good examples. On top of that, these types of presentations come in many different forms, such as a sale pitch, a scientific report, a speech, a political debate and many more.

I think it’s pretty easy to tell that I’m not a huge fan of oral presentations, but during our time in Boussole, we’ve done our fair share of them. I definitely have a lot to improve on when it comes to public speaking, and that’s exactly what I’ll be talking about in this blog post.

How to Prepare an Oral Presentation, Wikihow – https://www.wikihow.com/Prepare-an-Oral-Presentation

In all honesty, I’m pretty terrible at oral presentations, but you probably all knew that already. I can never seem to talk loud enough, and my voice keeps shaking, and I keep fidgeting with the hem of my shirt and it’s just a disaster all around. On top of that, I often end up reading off of the presentation (or that’s what it feels like, at least). All in all, there is a lot I need to improve on. Something that I believe I can do quite well, however, is the formatting in the visual support, like a power point, for example. I think I’m pretty good at keeping the text short enough and organizing the slides, even though I still need to improve on that a little. I’m also pretty good at not making mistakes while talking, even though I tend to repeat myself a lot and trip over my words.

20 Public Speaking Tips for Students, Arlin Cuncic – https://www.verywellmind.com/public-speaking-tips-3024732

Now of course, it’s obvious that I have a lot of work to do. But I think if I take it one step at a time, I can improve a little over time. First off, my main goal is to be able to get through one sentence without stuttering. I think the main thing to do here would just be to practice until I’m comfortable with my script. Second, I’d really like to make my visual support more engaging for the audience. I can do this by eliminating more text and adding pictures, diagrams, or other interesting elements. Third, I really need to talk louder during my presentations. I get told this every time a project involves public speaking, and yet I can never talk loud enough, no matter how hard I try. I think this is just a skill I need to develop, and the best way to do that is just plain old practice.

In conclusion, I honestly really don’t like public speaking. It makes me nervous and stressed and is all around just not a good time. However, I recognize that it is an important part of life, which is why we do it in the first place. I know what I need to improve, and I’ve set goals to do just that, so hopefully I can get better at oral presentations in the future.

Setting Goals, WorkCompass – https://www.workcompass.com/setting-goals/

Theatres end?

The age-old question, Is theatre dead? Its death has been a long-debated topic, with people being split on its status. With the upbringing of new technology, theatre has had a hard time keeping up. The theatre was cast away in its shadow with the introduction of films, but is theatre dead? This is a tricky question to answer since a sizeable hidden community of theatre enthusiasts still roam our land, and for excellent reasons. If we were to compare those two, we could conclude that theatre is not as big as it was, but it can do things that film cannot.  

Theatre has taken a hit in popularity recently due to the pandemic. Many will opt towards a movie rather than going out to watch a play for good reasons. Most theatres have shut down since they are not deemed essential. Has this affected showbiz in a way? Like I have mentioned before, the remote community of theatre enthusiasts is massive, and according to a report by CTVNews, many want theatres to open back up safely.

The aura

What is theatre? Theater uses live performers (actors and actresses) to perform numerous real or imagined scenes in front of the scene, and this is one of the biggest reasons why films will not be able to have the same ambiance as theatre. As the velvety curtains drop, the hot light shining onto the stage, as the first actor walks out, that is what makes theatre great. As I mentioned, the theatre will always be performed in front of a live audience. Live theatre allows spectators to connect with the character, allowing writers to play and mess around with character development. Think about theatre like a child; the characters come alive right in front of you as if you have been with them their entire life. A play will cover the audience in a chimera, engaging the audience to join the same world as the actors.

Stage shows, musicals and opera you can watch online now for free |  WhatsOnStage
WhatsOnStage. “Stage Shows, Musicals and Opera You Can Watch Online Now for Free.” Whatsonstage, 4 Feb. 2021, www.whatsonstage.com/london-theatre/news/stage-shows-musicals-opera-free-stream-online_51198.html.

Actors/Actresses

Another thing that theatre does that films cannot do is giving the actors the flexibility and power to allow their actors to embrace and become their characters. Instead, CGI is heavily used today and aged, with big companies like Marvel, investing millions of dollars into it. Yes, it makes for beautiful scenery and cool effects, but what does this mean for the actors? Let us take the transformers series as an example due to its heavy presence of CGI. When the robots are terrorizing the city, the human actors have to act scared, and while they do an excellent job at it, they do not feel it. Also, they have to imagine some things, such as placement for CGI objects.

Mask - Theatrical uses | Britannica
Wingert, Paul. “Mask – Theatrical Uses.” Encyclopedia Britannica, Britannica, www.britannica.com/art/mask-face-covering/Theatrical-uses.

Contrary to films, theatre is raw emotion.  It gives a chance for their actors to put on a costume and become a whole new person and interacting with objects and other characters. Theatre teaches us how to express ourselves effectively. It helps develop our ability to communicate our thoughts and feelings to others, improving our relationships. Most of the time, film scenes are filmed in a nonchronological order, meaning that the actors do not share the same character development as theatre or even know how the movie will end up. Contrary to the theatre, the actors in the theatre get to perform their story in chronological order, which ensures they can easily tell a story that is more gripping on stage than on film.

Final verdict

In conclusion, some might not agree, but theatre is still in a form alive with a big following! Theatre does a lot that movies cannot give the audience, such as a more sumptuous viewing time due to it being live. In addition, it allows the audience to connect with the characters and progress with them. Also, theatre is traditionally better for actors since it allows them to take character more rather than a movie role.

Source

The Canadian Press, and Victoria Ahearn. “‘Fighting for Our Lives’: Canada’s Theatre Industry Tries to Plan for Uncertain 2021.” CTVNews, 22 Dec. 2020, www.ctvnews.ca/entertainment/fighting-for-our-lives-canada-s-theatre-industry-tries-to-plan-for-uncertain-2021-1.5241430.

Presentations are getting interesting

With the number of projects and oral presentations we’ve been given this semester, it became almost second nature that we change up how we present our ideas and research. Having been taught how to properly present, gave me a lot of insight on how to spice up my presentations and I think I am going to use these strategies for the rest of my years as a student and possibly beyond.

Starting with research, this part has already been talked about a lot in one of my previous blogs « Filmmaker – Editing » and I use those strategies to this day. Having an organized research strategy makes gathering information almost seamless. Making that information presentable both visually and audibly is key for delivering the information you’ve gathered to an engaged audience. The entire point of the presentation is to educate your peers on a certain subject so if they lose focus, there is no point. There has to be a good contrast between what you say and what is shown in the presentation to keep both you and your audience from reading too much.

On to the oral presentation itself, like I previously mentioned you want to avoid reading as much as possible. Reading while giving an oral presentation is a sure way to bore your audience and also gives you room to mess up in a way that can easily be avoided. If you spend your whole presentation reading, your audience is essentially ingesting the information twice both audibly and visually. The best way in my opinion to avoid this is making bullet points, knowing what you are talking about, and referring back to your points only when needed but above all keep a steady pace.

We also have to keep in mind the different types of presentations, we’ve done PowerPoints, videos, speeches, etc… They are all different types of presentations with different ways to present each of them. My personal favorite being videos because it gives more creative liberties and just generally feels better to make because video making is a fun pastime of mine. Video projects have a whole process to them and are very easy to get right as you can always do as many takes needed. The main thing that differentiates them is that you aren’t put on the spot to present and that you can present something that you are sure has been done to the best of your abilities. The other types of presentations are pretty straight forward and we’ve done them the most and I don’t think they really merit an explanation as I’m sure everyone reading this knows but one thing I can say with 100% confidence is that we are all benefitting from these presentation strategies and are making far better presentations because of it.

Theatre sucks

The Best Live Theatre Venues in Toronto

Yeah I said it. Theatre is a poor man’s cinema. I doubt that anyone still attend plays unless they own a senior citizen’s card or are in high school . It’s not the greatest combination ever. Trust me, I know from experience. Movies just do everything better. Better visuals, music, actors, etc. They generate more attention because they’re more entertaining. Nowadays, you can watch a movie on your phone while waiting for your plane, so movies are also way more accessible. The only way to really experience a play is live, and that can be a bit of a bother. They’re only in 1 specific location and only a few times per year. The actors can’t perform at 30 locations at the same time so finding seats for these plays could be troublesome and expensive.

A Chronological History of Social Media
Kyiv, Ukraine. “A Paper Cubes Collection with Printed Logos of World-Famous Social Networks and Online Messengers, Such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, Telegram and Others.” IStock, Getty Images, 5 Sept. 2019, www.istockphoto.com/photo/social-media-apps-logotypes-printed-on-a-cubes-gm1173494837-325964650.

A big reason why I think theatre is irrelevant is because it’s main audience is starting to die out. As I said before, the main group of people who seek out plays are older citizens. Younger generations are interested in more stimulating pieces of entertainment, like YouTube videos, video games and social media platforms such as Instagram and TikTok. These are all way more accessible than old plays that came out centuries ago. As older generations start to die out, so will theatres and plays. There’s also a huge lack of advertisement for plays. I honestly can’t remember the last time I’ve seen an ad for any sort of play. The last thing I can think of is an ad for a Harry Potter play a few years ago. Meanwhile, you see advertisement for movies every single day. This makes it so more people go out to watch movies, rather than hear about a play from a friend or see it on some billboard.

University Amphitheatre Full Of Students Doing Exam Stock Photo - Download  Image Now - iStock
Nesher, Sky. “University Amphitheatre Full of Students Doing Exam.” IStock, Getty Images, 13 Sept. 2012, www.istockphoto.com/photo/university-amphitheatre-full-of-students-doing-exam-gm154998982-21484293.

I think that the only way to keep theatre alive is to continue studying them in class. The only plays I’ve read or watched were at school or on a school trip. Some of them turned out to be pretty memorable, but I still wouldn’t go view a play because of the many better and more accessible options I listed. I’d say that one way to bring back plays would be to use themes you see in successful movies nowadays, but watching a superhero play would be pretty cringeworthy in my opinion. In conclusion, I believe that theatre is irrelevant to the public, but will still stay relevant to those who study literature.

The slow death of theatre

Theater is one of the oldest forms of entertainment. It can date back to the 6th century B.C., when the Ancient Greeks were the first to present dramatic presentations. For centuries people have enjoyed drama, comedy, music, and other forms of entertainment. Theater has genuinely held the test of time, as it has been relevant for thousands of years. However, I’d say that theatre has felt like something that older people attend, and teachers usually make their students watch in recent years. I’m not speaking on behalf of every teenager when I say that I’m not really fond of theatre and plays, but it might be because I’ve only seen around 2 plays and read about 3 to 5. It’s primarily been in school for English or French class and, most of them were not interesting to me. The only one I’d say I enjoyed was the Crucible play. To get back on topic, my opinion is that theatre is no longer as relevant in 2021 as it once used to be.

The cast of « Matilda » at the Garden Theatre in Winter Garden sing and dance in masks. (Garden Theatre)
“2 Theatrical Masks. One Frowning, One Smiling.” Pinterest, Heart of the Hills Players, www.pinterest.ca/pin/611434086884371449/.

Based on my own experience, theatre hasn’t been that relevant, mainly because of how poorly it’s been advertised in the past 10-15 years. I’ve only known about theatre through my parents, who read plays when they were in school or me watching them at school. In public and media, all you hear about are movies and musicians. There has been a significant lack of promotions for theatre, so it never felt like something substantial. I understand why people keep the spirit of theatre alive because it’s been a form of expression for centuries. Still, if society wants to keep the youth engaged, they have to appeal to them in one way or another. Either by incorporating topics that interest them more or by advertising traditional theatre more.

Fox, Chris. “Social Media: How Might It Be Regulated?” BBC, © 2021 BBC., 12 Nov. 2020, www.bbc.com/news/technology-54901083.

Either way, I think it’s too late to do such, as people have moved past theatre, and we’re more engaged in all digital media, be it video games, social media platforms, movies & T.V. shows, or music. We now care more about people’s lives on sites like YouTube, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, and more, than old-fashioned theatre.

“A Photo of Downtown Stratford.” Stratford, Ontario, © Copyright 2015 Intelligent Community Forum, www.intelligentcommunity.org/stratford_ontario.

Most of us nowadays experience plays through school assignments like in English class whenever we went to Stratford to watch Romeo & Juliet or The Crucible. It’s okay if people believe it’s relevant, but this is just my own opinion. Also, I have a question for whoever is reading this blog: If you personally believe that theatre is relevant, do you think there’s a way for people to bring the attention of the youth towards theatre? If you believe that it’s not relevant, why do you think so?

Although I didn’t really use this website to write this blog, I recommend you read the article because it gives some insight into why theatre as a whole is not « important » but rather « enlivening »

Works Cited

Gascoigne, Bamber. ‘HISTORY OF THEATRE’. History World, From 2001, ongoing, www.historyworld.net/wrldhis/PlainTextHistories.asp?ParagraphID=cui. Accessed 5 May 2021.

The Art of Presentation: COVID-19 Edition

From a young age, we were taught the importance of presentations and what it means to be a good presenter as well as a bad one.  I can clearly remember my first presentation which covers my cultural heritage in the 2nd grade. As children, teenagers and adults, we are always creating and giving presentations on various topics in work and school settings. By now, we all know the basic criteria of how to lead a successful presentation, we need to be presenting the topic and not reading it, you need to have good intonation and seem interested in what you are presenting, and you need to make your presentation interested, so a lot of pictures and little to no words. These criteria were and still are very useful to us nowadays, but with the introduction of quarantine into our lives and with everyone working online, what are the best tips for oral and oral visual presentation in current COVID quarantine?

Caroline Goyder August 3, et al. “Zoom Tips: 5 Ways to Make Online Presentations Pop.” The Enterprisers Project, 3 Aug. 2020, enterprisersproject.com/article/2020/8/zoom-tips-online-presentations.

Nothing is worse and more boring than listening to someone read and ramble on about a random topic during a presentation.  Typically, people tend to have short attention spans comparable to that of a goldfish. Due to covid, people’s attention spans are even shorter as if they lose interest, they will probably open a YouTube video or a game. So, maintaining their interest is your priority as a presenter and to do so, you MUST keep your presentation SIMPLE!!! This however is easier said than done. Having made a fair share of presentations myself, I understand the feeling of needing to cram as much information into your presentation as possible thinking that every single crumb of it is important. Well, in order to maintain your audience’s attention, you need to summarize your information to a bare minimum. Focus on the overall message rather than the many details. When it comes to PowerPoint presentations, rather than suffocating your slides with hundreds of words, have a few sentences or bullet points and use the rest of the space for pictures and diagrams which correlate with the topic of discussion. Here is a good example.

Master your craft:

A good presenter should not depend on his presentation to deliver the message.  In order to be able to able to properly deliver a presentation, you need to determine how prepared you are to do so and what you require to master your topic. Speaking from personal experience, rehearsing your presentation, understanding your topic and being passionate about your topic will take you a long way. This will allow you to be prepared during unexpected scenarios such as if your screen share does not work or if run into any other form of technical difficulties. These sorts of preparations will allow you to feel confident and not be as nervous on stage. Practice your presentations on a group of friends on a call who will give you constructive criticism to receive tips and pointer on what you should improve and make sure that your virtual presentation work ahead of time. Without proper preparations, you can expect to stutter, lose your train of thought and run into technical difficulties during your presentations which will do nothing but add even more stress to you and make you lose your confidence. Great preparation also allows for you to have an easier time during recordings for any documentaries, plays or campaigns you may have to record for your classes. By the end of your preparation period, you should be able to comfortably present in front of a big crowd of virtual icons. 

Boston, Jane. “Taking an ABIM Practice Exam Will Help You Feel Better About Taking Those Boards.” NEJM Knowledge+, 28 Jan. 2016, knowledgeplus.nejm.org/blog/taking-an-abim-practice-exam-will-help-you-feel-better-about-taking-those-boards/.

Now that you can grasp the concept of how to even come close to delivering a great presentation, it is your time to shine.  Your presentation will without a doubt be a lot better and you can expect a lot better results and feedback.