Department or Program

Theater and Dance


Considered to be one of the most important artistic works of the 20th century, Tony Kushner’s Angels in America: A Gay Fantasia on National Themes, Part One: Millennium Approaches, is an emphatic plea to alter societal values on religion, politics, sexuality, and American identity. This magical and epic play revolves around two couples who face unendurable circumstances, and their struggle to persist despite the world crumbling around them. Set in the fractured atmosphere of 1980’s New York City, Kushner explores postwar conservatism and its rejection of progressive principles, especially concerning the abandoned gay community during the HIV/AIDS epidemic. This project centers around the character Harper Amaty Pitt, the role I portray in Tim Dugan’s production in Schaeffer Theater at Bates College. I construct the character of Harper through the application of various tools proposed in Michael Chekhov’s To The Actor and Constantin Stanislavski's An Actor Prepares. Chekhov’s method of psycho-physical acting facilitates the exploration of character impulses, development of imagination, and integration of body and voice into my character. Stanislavski’s technique will assist in textual analysis, specifically involving the identification of given circumstances, objectives, and units of action. This thesis aims to explore key themes of the play, its social-historical context, offer in-depth character analysis, and reflect on my process as an actor. These written and performance components broaden both how I approach characters and expand my knowledge of different acting techniques.

Level of Access

Open Access

First Advisor

Dugan, Tim

Date of Graduation


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Number of Pages


Components of Thesis

1 pdf file

Open Access

Available to all.