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Anna in the tropics - Essay Example

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Name Anna in the Tropics I was particularly interested and looking forward to seeing Anna in the Tropics mainly due to the setting of the story which is located around 1929. During that time many Cubans moved to Florida where they brought the cigar business with them (Perez, 73)…
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Anna in the tropics
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Anna in the tropics

Download file to see previous pages... This was the only form of entertainment for the cigar factory workers of the time. So, I expected this play to portray the dilemma of the time when factory owners were faced by the choice of switching to modernization or carrying on their traditions. Apart from this, I expected it to have a tinge of romance in this which was enhanced by the presence of conflict and then its resolution. The play, Anna in the Tropics, revolves around a Cuban family that settles in Tampa, Florida and sets up a cigar business in the city. The factory owner, Santiago and his wife Ofelia have two daughters named Conchita and Marela who also work in their family cigar warehouse rolling cigars. A new lector comes into the factory named Juan Julian who reads the exciting Russian story of Anna Karenina. Marela, who wants to experience life outside the factory and Conchita who does not seem to be having a happy married life with her husband, Palomo, are very intrigued by the story of Anna Karenina. Santiago’s brother, Cheche, on the other hand, despises lectors due to a previous event where his wife ran off a previous lector and therefore wants to remove the lector and bring modern machineries to aid the rolling of cigars. My favorite characters include Marela, Cheche, and Juan Julian. In the first Act, Marela characterizes a very comic and humorous character with slightly immature thoughts. She feels restricted within the boundaries of her family cigar warehouse and wants to enjoy life outside of the factory. She is dumbstruck when she sees Juan Julian when she was waiting for him with her mother and sister. Marela is very influenced by the story of Anna Karenina narrated by Juan Julian. I feel that Marela is child-like initially and wants to live life more than just rolling cigars at her father’s factory. I can Marela’s feelings because being in the factory all the time with only a lector’s story to entertain can be boring particularly for a merry girl like Marela, who wants to enjoy her life. Cheche, Santiago’s half brother does not seem to like Juan Julian which results from his past experience where the lector ran with his wife. Even Juan Julian finds out when he first meets Cheche but I believe Cheche’s feelings are natural having his wife run off with a previous lector. Perhaps the most interesting character is that of Juan Julian, the lector who has been hired by Ofelia as a lector to entertain the cigar workers. Julian’s character becomes more compelling when he narrates the story of Anna Karenina which interests both Marela and Conchita equally. The play repeatedly tries to emphasize on the theme of tradition and change, problems and resolution, and love. Although it is apparent that Cheche already despises lectors due to his bitter past experience his dislike is added by the fact that he wants to introduce modern machinery to aid the factory workers in making cigars. As he aims to bring new machines into the warehouse he threatens the existence of old Cuban traditions of having a lector and workers roll cigars with their hands. And Conchita who is having a troubled marriage with her husband who is having an affair. Conchita feels influenced by Julian’s story of Anna Karenina and to some extent with Juan Julian. Music and lighting has been one of the most important elements of the play enhancing its theme and effect. Every scene in the Act was followed by music inspired by Cuban music. This helped the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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