Analysis Of The Shoe Horn Sonata By John Jeffata

Submitted By jacintskye
Words: 1097
Pages: 5

The Shoe Horn Sonata 1. The first time John Misto performed the play; “The Shoe-Horn Sonata” was in 1995 and was seen during Australia Remembers National Play Competition. 2. Betty Jeffery was a member of the Australian Army Nursing Service who wrote the book “White Coolies,” she is a significant figure in the play as the play Shoe Horn Sonata is based on Betty Jeffery’s book “White Coolies.” 3. A short version in point summary of the play Shoe Horn Sonata * The play centres on 2 characters. * One a nurse with a catholic backgrounds the other an English girl. * They met after their ships had been sunk while fleeing the siege of Singapore in 1942. * They form a friendship which survives 3 and half years in captivity. * 50years on, they at a reunion organised by a documentary team. * Neither is sure where their friendship lies. * They are wary of each other and the renewing of their friendship. 4. The Shoe Horn is of key significance in the play as the Shoe Horn itself was given to the Army nurse by her father who was given the Shoe Horn as a gift when she first joins the army, this item is useful in many of the camps and is a metronome by the Choral society which was formed by the prisoners. A metronome is a musical instrument which is kind of like the key to a beat soo a bit like the bass in a techno song so it sets the tone of the song and is an essential item in music. Soooo like umm Swedish house mafia have awesome bass so the Shoe Horn is like the bass to their music when they sing in the prison camp to keep them happy as they sing “don’t you worry child.” :P 5. A timeline of the Events that happened after the fall of Singapore as the nurses try and escape: * 12th of Feb. 1942, The Army Nursing Service sailed away from Singapore protesting about leaving. * 14th of Feb. The ship is hit by Japanese aircraft. * 12 Nurses were killed or drowned in the water; some made it to life boats and made it to the Shore of Banka Island in Sumatra. * One group of the nurses reaches Radji beach with male survivors. After a time they gave themselves into the Japanese who threw the men off a cliff or shot them in the head. (Sorry for such a graphic description but that’s just the way it was men were deemed to be of no use) * The 12 nurses left from Radji Island are marched onto the beach where they too are shot in the head. * One nurse feigns her death, finds a male survivor in the jungle but several days later they give up. * The surviving 32 nurses are reunited in a prison camp with women, children and British army nurses. * Another 8 nurses die before the end of the war while living in the camps. * In the camp they are not given food, medicine, beaten and humiliated in most likely sexual ways. Of the original 65 only 24 survive. * Both Male and Female prisoners were deprived of basic needs and humiliated in a variety of sad, sadistic and cruel ways. 6. The intention of the play the Shoe Horn Sonata is for John Misto to startle his audience with unquestionable facts and to write a play that was “as honestly and accurately possible.” 7. Vera Harms (Page 11 near the very bottom) learns that a number of Australian governments deliberately ignored the right of female ex prisoners for recognition and compassion. 8. The playwright is demonstrated by the choice of a simple implement a shoe horn which will centre the play. It unites both narrative and dialogue and acts as a catalyst (basically means the main character or thing in the play for example James bond is the catalyst in the James bond movies: P). The shoe horn becomes symbolic when they leave the prison camp as it has always been with them. 9. The impartial interviewer is of course John Misto and he brings about a re-examination of values and troubles 50 years on from now, leaving to many devastating insights.