Dracula, Dracula, Dracula

Image

            We all know the main story behind the Dracula novel by Bram Stoker, but most people never notice the small differences between the Novel, Play and Movies. Several different versions of the Dracula play and movie have been produced, most containing minor changes. However, the theme and background of Stoker’s novel always remain the same.

The original story of Dracula came from Stoker’s novel. In the novel, Jonathan Harker travels to Transylvania to finish a business transaction with Count Dracula. Harker’s diary gives the reader a first-person point of view throughout his adventure.  As the story continues, you learn of Harkers imprisonment in Castle Dracula. Jonathan is engaged to his love, Mina Murray, who is a well-respected woman. Lucy Westenra is Mina’s best friend. She was offered marriage by three different men, but chose Arthur Holmwood. Lucy later fell under a spell, deteriorating her health. Lucy was the first victim of Dracula’s curse, but far from the only.

The most popular version of a Dracula movie was produced in 1992, nearly a Century after the production of Stoker’s novel. The movie travels back to 1462 as Prince Dracula leaves his love Elizabeta for war. His bride, believing him to be dead, flings herself into the river from high above. Dracula returns to find his love deceased, and seeks revenge. Harker is engaged to Mina, just like the novel, and travels to Castle Dracula in Transylvania to settle business. Dracula sees Mina as his Love reincarnated. Dracula takes Lucy as his wife instead. The movie ends with Mina kissing Dracula, and then kills him.

After Stoker finished his Novel, he attempted to make a play production based off it. The story was nearly identical, but not nearly as successful. Years later, after the Dracula novel became popular, several different versions of the play were produced. The same story was basically being told, but different adaptations went along with each version. The most common version of the play begins with Dracula luring Mina in to his spell, sucking the blood out of her. Scenes later, Lucy falls under the same spell as Dracula sucks blood from her neck. The Count affects Lucy and Mina’s personalities. They are no longer the caring, loving people as before. Lucy tries to attack the people she loves the most. Lucy was the fiancé of Jonathan Harker in the play.

Out of the novel, play and movie my favorite was the play. The play was my favorite because the action intrigued me. The dramatic effects helped keep me entertained and the actors really did a great job with their roles. They worked well with the audience, and really brought the play to life. As for the changes made to the plays and movies, they have really contributed from them. Times have changed, and the Dracula novel has not. More action needed to be added to suffice today’s viewers. If the play and movie included the same amount of little details that the novel contains, audiences would be put to sleep. The adaptations to each have certainly been worth it. If Bram Stoker were alive, he would certainly have to agree.

Works Cited

McNulty, William. “Actors Theatre of Louisville.” Actors Theatre of Louisville. Fifth Third Bank, n.d. Web. 30 Sept. 2013.

SparkNotes Editors. “SparkNote on Dracula.” SparkNotes.com. SparkNotes LLC. 2003. Web. 26 Sept. 2013.

Stoker, Bram. Dracula. 1897. New York: Oxford University Press, 1990.

By zdurham14

A Performance worth Broadway

dracula

Last weekend my DC English class took a trip to the Actors Theatre in Louisville. The theatre was showing “Dracula”, and it was impressive. This is the 50th anniversary season for the Actors Theatre, and boy did they put on a show. The sponsor, Fifth Third Bank, has contributed a lot to the production. Overall, the Dracula production put on that day was perfect for any drama fan.

The story behind the play dates back to the late 1800’s to a novel written by Bram Stoker. Stoker’s story is told through letters and journal entries. Count Dracula resides in Transylvania where he owns a castle. The count takes hostage a lawyer, Jonathan Harker, whose firm sends him to make a real estate transaction with the Count. Harker later escapes and flees back to London. Count Dracula attempts to find fresh blood and new victims in London, but the Victorians would not allow it. For all of the details and an action packed story, read the book or make a trip to see Dracula performed live! It will be well worth your time!

The atmosphere in the playhouse was great for a smaller audience. Our tickets were second row, but in my opinion, any seat in the house would have felt the same way. The scenery and props gave me a sense that we were in the Victorian era, witnessing live action. The lighting was perfection as well. The lighting displayed the correct mood at the appropriate times. For example, when Dracula would come into the room, the lighting darkened knotting the pit of everyone’s stomach. You just knew something bad was about to happen. The sound effects had the biggest impact on my experience. These background noises contributed to the performance by setting the mood just as the lighting did. The costumes were also very well organized in the production. They represented the setting of the story and gave each character distinguishable traits to let you know who each character is .Count Dracula was costumed to perfection.

The actors were well qualified to play each role. They represented their character well and rarely slipped up on their roles. They all worked together well and created a vibe for the audience. Count Dracula’s actor was Randolph Curtis Rand. If there were an MVP of the performance, Mr. Rand would receive my vote! He acted Dracula’s role beautifully; giving the audience, a real understanding of the type of person Dracula really was. In some ways, I think Van Helsing’s actor underplayed his role.  He failed to give off some qualities that the character needed for the performance. Overall, these actors played their roles in the script to my satisfaction.

This time of year would be the perfect time to go see a Dracula play! With Halloween coming up, it could really be the perfect start to your spooky season! There are several productions of this play around the globe, but to find one as well organized and directed as this production is uncommon. Dracula the play in the Actors Theatre in Louisville is a must see!

 

Works Cited

Stoker, Bram. Dracula. 1897. New York: Oxford University Press, 1990.

McNulty, William. “Actors Theatre of Louisville.” Actors Theatre of Louisville. Fifth Third Bank, n.d. Web. 30 Sept. 2013.

 

By zdurham14

Reviewing the Blood Seeking Demon

dracula Merriam-Webster defines “Dracula” as “one who maintains a relationship like that of a vampire toward another by sapping his physical or emotional strength.” Upon the thought of the Dracula novel, that is nearly exactly what comes to mind. Dracula is a blood-searching demon that thrives on the blood of others to maintain life in his later years. Bram Stoker wrote Dracula during the late 1800’s during what was the “potato famine” worldwide. It was a period of starvation and hunger and the “walking dead” period. The time was rough, the people were struggling, but Bram Stoker’s novel nearly fit into the way the nation was behaving.
Bram Stoker’s novel is a collection of letters, papers, and journals. Different characters write each entry, which helps build suspense throughout the story. In my opinion, the evil vampire is an example of a life not walking down the Christian path, but putting Christ in their rear view mirror. The life that attempts to drag others down the wrong path with them. The only way the terror can be halted, is if the Christ followers destroy the darkness surrounding them. Dracula takes several characters, mainly women, down his path until Professor Abraham Van Helsing uses his wit to bring the culprit to rest.
One detail that struck out to me throughout the novel was the use of sexual interaction. Yes, it added details and pointed out the negative features of these demons, specifically Dracula, but could they not have been explained less? In my opinion, there were several details readers could have been fine without knowing. For example, early in the novel there was a group of sisters who felt sexually attracted to John Harker. Mr. Stoker described this scene as if it were very important to the outcome of the novel. On the other side, a detail that Stoker could have used more is Christian icons. The icons appear periodically, but were not described with great detail. As Van Helsing said later in the novel, that he is a “minister of God’s own wish.” Another key example of Christian icons that was not explained in great detail was the effect that crosses and scripture had on Dracula.
This book appealed to me in an emotional way. Dracula took me back in history to the period in which it was written. The story gave me a sense of what it must have been like to live in the late 1800’s-early 1900’s. The detail the author provided really kept me entertained. He kept the story understandable, even to people who know little about the time in which the novel was wrote. Dracula has all the requirements to keep it read by each generation of horror fans. Do not be expecting a modern day love story when you dive into this book or you will be in for quite the surprise! Dracula is a must read!
Works Cited
“Dracula.” Merriam-Webster.com. Merriam-Webster, n.d. Web. 25 Sept. 2013. .
SparkNotes Editors. “SparkNote on Dracula.” SparkNotes.com. SparkNotes LLC. 2003. Web. 19 Sept. 2013
Stoker, Bram. Dracula. 1897. New York: Oxford University Press, 1990.

By zdurham14

Dracula’s Impact on History

Dracula by Bram Stoker has not only made an impact on the history of literature, but the history of everything. From the way literature has been written to the way drama productions have been performed, Dracula can be looked at as a turning point in history. Throughout reading Dracula recently, several of these impacts stood out to me. It really kept me interested, and kept me turning to the next page.

One impact from Dracula that I have noticed in literature is that many have used the count as a villain, and many have used vampires in their literature afterwards. Transylvania is often also perceived to be a home of evil, and a home for the vampires. Even here recently in the 21st century, vampires took over the literary charts as “The Twilight Series” burst onto the scene. Ever since Dracula, vampires have been used more and more in literature.

Since the novel of Dracula was published, several filmmakers have attempted to produce it into a creation of their own. One of the first film works after the novel was published caused Stoker to sue for infringement. “The 1931 film version of Dracula was based on the 1927 stage play dramatized, with the Stoker estate’s endorsement, by Hamilton Deane and John L. Balderston(see below), starred Bela Lugosi versus Edward Van Sloan, both of whom had originated their respective roles on the stage in the aforementioned play, and was directed by Tod Browning. It is one of the most famous versions of the story and is commonly considered a horror classic. In 2000, the United States Library of Congress deemed the film “culturally significant” and selected it for preservation in the National Film Registry. The films had music only during the opening (the famous main theme from Swan Lake, which was also used at the beginning of other Universal horror productions) and closing credits, and during a brief sequence set at an opera. In 1999, Philip Glass was commissioned to compose a musical score to accompany the film. The current DVD release allows access to this music.” Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dracula_in_popular_culture

“Patrick Lussier directed a modern day version of the story Dracula 2000, promoted as Wes Craven Presents Dracula 2000. The film gives Dracula (played by Gerard Butler) a new identity as Judas Iscariot, forbidden by God to die following his betrayal of Christ and intent on corrupting the innocent. Dracula 2000 was followed by two sequels, Dracula II: Ascension (in 2003) and Dracula III: Legacy (in 2005)” As you can see, there are still productions of the novel published in 1897 being produced today.

Throughout the years, Dracula keeps coming up in: Film productions, Plays, Short stories, Anime, comics, and even cartoons. If you have read the novel, you can sometimes notice the connection. If you ever get a chance to see a Dracula performance of any sort, take advantage of it. It will be well worth your time. Also, if you have not read the Dracula novel, DO IT! You can never go wrong with reading one of the best literature pieces of all time.

Sources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dracula_in_popular_culture

By zdurham14

Judgement House

Image

This Saturday night a couple of friends and I attended a Christian drama called “Judgement House” at Lebanon Baptist Church in Marion County, Kentucky. The drama is about a family who live their lives right, and are great people but are missing one piece to their puzzle. They haven’t accepted Jesus Christ in their hearts. They have not let God take control of their lives.

The family is a close-knit family and they have a perfect relationship with one another. The parents are good, hard-working people who love their children. I do not want to give away too much for those who have yet to see the drama, but I want to explain the outline of it. Their is 2 daughters and one son in the family. The Dad left for a business trip during the opening scene. The girls are at play practice with a friend and the son is at football practice.

At play practice the girls friend tells them about her best friend and Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The older sister even accepts Jesus Christ into her heart. After play practice the Mom picks the girls up and takes them out to eat before taking their friend home. They decide to sit outside at the cafe. They are sitting outside eating and bam, the whole night changes in a blink of an eye. A teenage girl ran off the side of the road and into the picnic table, killing the Mom, Older sister, friend and the waitress.

The victims certainly were not ready to die that night. But, nobody knows exactly when they are going to die. If you died tonight and faced God’s judgement at the gates of heaven, would you be let in? Or denied at the footsteps of Christ because you did not let God take control of your life on Earth and did not live a life pleasing to God. When your time comes, God will have his decision made, but it is up to you with the decision you make here on earth while your still living, while you still have that chance. It is not to late, luckily we have a forgiving God who gave his Son to forgive us of our sins on that cross. The Mom and waitress were not ready, and will never get to see her daughter again. However, thankfully for the friend, the oldest daughter and the friend get to spend eternity together in heaven. The youngest daughter, son and Father have more time remaining on this Earth. Are they going to let Christ into their heart and spend eternity together and with their sister? That is up to them.

If something happened to you tonight, would you be ready? Would your name be in the Lamb’s book of life? Do not go to sleep tonight without knowing that answer. If you are interested in attending the judgement house, it will be open next Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights.

By zdurham14

Dracula

My first impression of Dracula was not a very good one. I predicted the book to be about a creature that does something crazy. I kind of thought it may turn out to be a love story or something dramatic. Honestly, I had no clue what it was about or what to expect. My whole life I have heard how Dracula is a great piece of literature, so I knew it should not be to bad of a read. When my DC English teacher let us know that we would spend a unit over Dracula and even go see a Dracula play, I kind of got excited.I had a chance to learn about a piece of Literature History that I had no clue about.

The first chapter was not to interesting to me. There was not a lot of action that kept me focused or any details that made me want to keep reading. The first chapter was about the journey Harker traveled to the castle and what happened throughout his adventure. We learned that Harker is an English solicitor. He is journeying to eastern Europe to continue a real estate deal with Count Dracula on a residence in London. He also foreshadowed a little bit about the castle and how “uncanny” it is.

In Chapter two the story begins to attract my attention a little. They begin to describe Count Dracula and his physical features. He is a tall and older gentleman with a super long and white mustache. Harker even mentions that Dracula’s cold hand had a firm handshake. He continues on to mention that Count has pointy ears, pale skin, and sharp looking teeth. Harker feels welcomed upon entering the house, but when he seats for dinner his nerves return. The next day he awakes with a note that Dracula is gone for the day. He has the house to himself. The following day, Dracula interrupts Harker while shaving and cuts himself. He starts picking up on signs that Dracula is very strange. Then finds out he is locked in the castle.

In chapter 3 Dracula begins to demand things of Harker. He tells him to write home saying that his stay is extended by a month. One night Harker forced a locked room open. He continued to fall asleep, opposite of Count’s wishes. He seems to dream about women but is alarmed by Dracula. The women scurried off as a small creature was fed to them.

In Chapter 4 Dracula demands Harker again to write home, but this time using a different date from the real date. He was instructed to write that he was headed home. Months later, he witnesses a pack of wolves devour a mother. Harker attempts to escape multiple times throughout the remainder of the chapter but fails.

My reading has not continued much since the conclusion of chapter 4, but I am excited to dig back in. My impression after the first four chapters has changed from my impression before beginning the novel. It is not the boring story I had expected. It actually has me attracted to read more.

By zdurham14

Campbellsville University Tigers vs. Lindsey Wilson College Blue Raiders

My weekend has consisted of football, football and more football! There is not a thing I would change about it either! Saturday morning my day started off by capturing a little league football championship with the team I help coach. They consist of 5th and 6th graders, who fought hard for a 7-0 victory. After that awesome start to the day concluded, I ventured over to Lindsey Wilson College to watch them take on the rival Campbellsville Tigers. It was a great game to watch, even if it was the longest game I have ever been apart of! It was action packed to say the least.

The game started off quickly in favor of the Tigers as Sophomore Jarrod Harrington took the opening kickoff 98 yards to the end zone. The Tigers tacked on the extra point to lead the Blue Raiders 7-0 less than 20 seconds into the contest.  Possessions rotated back and forth until the Raiders tacked on a 49-yard field goal by former Marion County Knight Mark Corbett with 3:53 remaining in the opening quarter. The Tigers answered quickly with a 40-yard field goal of their own.

Campbellsville University quarterback Bryan Parnes found Trevon Chatman diving into the end zone to make it 17-3 in the second quarter. As the quarter continued, Lindsey Wilson began gaining some momentum with a long drive of their own. Blue Raider quarterback Branden Crersap found Matt Powers on a 14 yard touchdown pass to cap off the drive with less than a minute remaining in the half. The Tigers led the Blue Raiders 17-10  at the half.

The second half kicked off and neither team could gain an edge or post any points on the scoreboard. Halfway through the third quarter, Travon Montgomery of the Tigers forced a fumble, and the Tigers recovered at the 45 yard line. Moments later, lightning struck and the game was on hold for a 3- hour delay with 8:51 remaining in the third quarter.

The teams waited patiently for the storm to pass, as everyone was instructed to seek shelter.  Early Sunday morning, the game resumed at approximately 1 o’clock AM. The Tigers retained possession when play resumed and the Blue Raiders forced a punt. Chris Dobbins returned the punt 67 yards to pay dirt, but the LWC touchdown was taken away by a illegal block in the back. They started their drive with the pigskin at their own 44 yard line with four minutes remaining in the third quarter. The Raiders drove but could not convert inside the red zone as Tiger linebacker Blake Young intercepted a pass at the 1 yard line. CU could not establish any momentum and were forced to punt. A handful of plays later, LWC converted from 77 yards to even the score at 17 a piece with 13 minutes remaining in the game. The Tigers hoped to regain the lead, but failed as the Raiders Shane Fields picked off a pass from Parnes. Minutes later Dakota Brown converted from 15 yards out to take the lead 24-17 for the first time of the night. The Tigers had one last chance to force overtime with 1:23 remaining in the contest and no time outs. Parnes moved his troops down field into Lindsey Wilson territory. The quarterback completed a pass to Neil Wilson with hopes of reaching the end zone and came up short, but a face mask penalty gave them one last attempt at the end zone. Campbellsville failed to convert, giving the Blue Raiders their first victory over the Tigers.

 

 

Source: http://www.lindseyathletics.com

 

By zdurham14