Definitions

Landscape_(play)

Landscape (play)

Landscape is a one act play published by playwright Harold Pinter in 1967.

The play is largely a social commentary on the difficulties of communication between two people in a marriage. This is illustrated through the two characters who appear to be talking to one another yet neither one actually hears the other person or at least does not respond to their words. It is a dialogue that resembles closely that of two independent monologues where the characters seem to speak through each other rather than to each other.

The play is often studied, read, and even acted out alongside "silence" another one act play published soon after Landscape. Both plays mark a change in the focus of Harold Pinter. In both plays nothing happens, the action of the plays are brought to a halt putting an added emphasis on the role of the dialogues and monologues that take place. As one critic put it "nothing happens but much is explored".

Set

The set is minimalist in nature, consisting of merely of a few kitchen appliances and a "kitchen" table. The kitchen table is elongated in an exaggerated manner measuring eight feet wide, in which the characters often sit on opposite ends of each other adding a sense of distance between the characters, accentuating the distance felt in the dialogue (or lack their of) between the two characters.

Plot

There is virtually no plot to the play. Indeed it has been characterized as a play where "nothing happens". The focus being on the interactions, or the distant relationship between the two characters. If any plot can be considered it is only external plot, that exist in the stories that are told by the characters, yet nothing that could be considered plot actually takes place and acted out on the set itself.

Radio version

A radio version of the play was broadcast on BBC Radio 4 in May 2008, with Harold Pinter himself playing the male character and Penelope Wilton the female part.

References

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