Fools By Neil Simon Neil Simon Neil Simon

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Fools By: Neil Simon

Fools By: Neil Simon

Neil Simon ● ● ● Neil Simon was born on July 4, 1927, in

Neil Simon ● ● ● Neil Simon was born on July 4, 1927, in New York, New York. This play was originally supposed to be bad because Neil Simon was going through a divorce and he didn’t want to make a profit because it would have been shared with his ex wife. This play didn’t win any awards but was on broadway for 40 days and has become a staple for community theatre and high school theatre. Neil Simon has received many awards for his works including a Pulitzer Prize. Some of his most notable work is “Brighton Beach Memoirs; Biloxi Blues”, “The Odd Couple”, and “Lost in Yonkers”. He won around 30 awards for his writings. Neil Simon passed August 26, 2018.

Publication and Awards ● Fools was published on April 6, 1981 at Eugene O’Neill

Publication and Awards ● Fools was published on April 6, 1981 at Eugene O’Neill Theatre. ● Although the play has not won any awards, Neil Simon has won many awards for his other plays. ● He has won two Tony Awards for best play for his plays The Odd Couple and Lost in Yonkers. ● He has also won a Pulitzer Prize for Drama Award for his play Lost in Yonkers.

Significance of title The significance of the title in ‘Fools’ is that everyone in

Significance of title The significance of the title in ‘Fools’ is that everyone in the play believes that they are cursed with stupidity and because they believe that they are stupid, they act like it. But In fact, there wasn’t actually a curse and so they were fooled into believing that they were under the curse.

Setting -Fools takes place in a small, isolated Ukrainian village called Kulyenchikov in the

Setting -Fools takes place in a small, isolated Ukrainian village called Kulyenchikov in the year 1890. - Since Fools was written in the 1980’s, there are themes in the play that correlate to what was viewed as important at the time. Some examples of this are questioning the definition of knowledge and its importance as well as Lenya’s feminist point of view gained at the end of the play. - The setting is significant to the plot of Fools because Kulyenchikov is a small and isolated town. This causes gossip (like the “curse”) to spread quickly. It allows means that information will not reach Kulyenchikov quickly because of its isolation.

The Importance of Knowledge While this idea is present with Leon's persistence on the

The Importance of Knowledge While this idea is present with Leon's persistence on the notion of intelligence, theme is also shown at the end, when all of the characters gain their intelligence back. Each person does something different with their new knowledge, and while not all of them have inherently good impacts, they all change the course of their own lives. Lenya, who is made fun of as on of the stupidest characters, becomes a successful politician fighting for women's rights. Yechna, who spent most of her time selling unwanted items, finds herself owning most of the property in Kulyenchikov. This shows the importance of intelligence, and how it can and will affect everyone. Love is a Powerful Motivator Leon Tolchinsky is clearly a learned man, and being around such dramatically stupid people must have been a great annoyance. However, his immediate devotion to Sophia keeps him from leaving and forces him to continue trying to break the curse in order to love her. In the end, he accomplishes both, showing how immense his adoration of her really was. You Are What You Believe The curse of Kulyenchikov states that if a teacher attempting to break the curse cannot do so within twenty-four hours, he too will become a fool. However, this does not happen to Leon - he remains intelligent, because he was never given a reason to believe he wasn't. Leon, himself, even states, "Kulyenchikov's lack of intelligence is selfinflicted, caused by fear and guilt and the relinquishing of your own self-esteem to a tyrannical power. " This proves that the curse wasn't completely real, and the characters only regained their intelligence when they believed they had. Themes

Central Conflict Leon has to educate Sophia to break the curse in Kulyenchikov in

Central Conflict Leon has to educate Sophia to break the curse in Kulyenchikov in 24 hours. Evidence of this is how much time Leon spends with Sophia trying to teach her and it being a challenge for him because Sophia is considered the dumbest person in the village. Protagonist: Leon Antagonist: Count Youskevitch and Society In the beginning the Count and Leon fight for Sophia’s hand in marriage, but as the story progresses Leon has to trick them into believing they are not cursed anymore. Coinciding with the sub conflict Sub Conflict Leon has to find a way to make the people of kulyenchikov believe that they’re no longer under the curse.

Brief Summary In a small, secluded, and cursed village called Kulyenchikov there was a

Brief Summary In a small, secluded, and cursed village called Kulyenchikov there was a schoolmaster named Leon Tolchinsky. This schoolmaster traveled far to this village to cure people of their progressing ignorance caused by a curse that they had since birth. During his time there, he is introduced to one of his students and she went by the name Sophia Zubritsky. Then the inciting incident occurred when Leon became infatuated with the sight of Sophia. This caused Leon to have a strong determination to educate Sophia, who was the only antidote to the curse, but education wasn’t the only way to break the curse. Another man by the name of Count Gregor Yousekevitch could marry Sophia and the curse could be broken, but the issue arose that Sophia didn’t love Count Gregor. Time began to run short and Sophia wasn’t near educated enough to break the curse before Leon became under the curse as well. Once the time ran out Leon realized that the curse once he did not turn ignorant. As a last resort, Leon pretends to be stupid and convinces Count Gregor to adopt him as his son so he can marry Sophia and break the “curse. ” Count Gregor then foils the plan and tells Leon he didn’t actually adopt him so he could Sophia instead of Leon. In the end, Leon pretends to have an ancestor that is a Yousekevitch so he could marry Sophia. Thankfully, his plan worked and the “curse” was broken and everyone began to live a successful life.

Characters Leon Tolchinsky- 20 -30 years old. Intelligent, stubborn schoolteacher. Vows to break the

Characters Leon Tolchinsky- 20 -30 years old. Intelligent, stubborn schoolteacher. Vows to break the curse by educating and marrying Sophia Zubritsky- 19 years old. She has a simple soul, but much smarter than she is given credit for. She craves knowledge and love. Only one who can break the curse. Dr. Nikolai Zubritsky- 40 -50 years old. A true full through and through, who acts as an unofficial leader of the town. Has a tendency to belittle his wife and daughter. Lenya Zubritsky- 40 -50 years old. Tends to belittle others, but she is much smarter than other give her credit for.

Important Quotes “After all, there are so many Kulenchikovs in the world” ● This

Important Quotes “After all, there are so many Kulenchikovs in the world” ● This quote is significant in the show because, the author broke the fourth wall to let the audience make the connect from the fictonal world of the play and the real world. “You can't be cursed unless you permit yourself to be” ● This quote is significant because it is in direct correlation to tone of themes of the show, you are only what you believe you are.

{ Unknown Vocabulary } Rudimentary (adj) involving or limited to basic principles ; relating

{ Unknown Vocabulary } Rudimentary (adj) involving or limited to basic principles ; relating to an immature, undeveloped, or basic form Deficient (adj) not having enough of a specified quality or ingredient Intelligentsia (adj) a group of intelligent people Kopek (noun) a unit of monetary value in Russia and some other former Soviet Union countries, equal to $0. 00015

Personal reactions! Selena - I enjoyed the play with all of it's clever humor

Personal reactions! Selena - I enjoyed the play with all of it's clever humor and its deeper meaning somewhat hidden behind its comedy facade. Audrey - I found the play to be hilarious and enjoyed the various puns and jokes throughout the play. I also felt it had some great messages about the importance of education and pursuing what you believe in. Dianna - I have always adored stupid humor. To elaborate, if the statement is stupid or ridiculous enough than it’s funny to me. And the play is filled with so many stupid statements, puns, and jokes. Like, for instance, in scene 3, page 25, Sophia came down the stairs and sat down, her parents began to celebrate the fact that she sat down beautifully.

Carissa - At first, I was disappointed with this play ; I didn’t feel

Carissa - At first, I was disappointed with this play ; I didn’t feel entertained by it, other than the few times I laughed. The style of play was new to me, so I didn’t quite understand why it was interesting. However, the more I read it, the more it began to make sense to me. The quick pace and humor of “Fools” is not something to be taken seriously as other plays, and that difference is exactly what makes it so enjoyable. There is not a lot of reason to think hard about what happens - simply, this style of play was made to amuse, and “Fools” does its job well. Naomi - I found the play “Fools” to be surprisingly more entertaining than I thought it would be. Most of the plays I enjoy reading are dramatic, so it was interesting for me to read something aside from that. I really enjoyed the play even more when looking into the greater meaning of it. Haley - When I first read this play, I was a bit put off. I didn’t expect “Fools” to be as charming and entertaining as it was. I quickly fell in love with the goofy characters and hilarious plot. The message is something that truly stuck out to me. I believe that theme of this was to never let someone decide how smart you are or how capable you are of something because it will eventually turn you into a “Fool”.

Anna- Personally, I thoroughly enjoyed reading the play Fools. I enjoyed the twists and

Anna- Personally, I thoroughly enjoyed reading the play Fools. I enjoyed the twists and turns of the plot line and the surprises that occurred followed by the perfect amount of comedy. I did not see the ending coming whatsoever! Overall, this play was a joy to read and I would recommend it to anyone who has a flair for comedy. Lily- I thought the message of limitations one puts on themselves that Fools gives is important for everyone to hear. It is also hilarious and made me laugh out loud almost the entire time I was reading it. The balance of comedy with an important message was what made the play so effective. Kristyna Locke- The way that the play was written with the amount of comedy and the serious note twisted in really made me get into the play. The ending was a total surprise. Leigh- As I read the play “Fools” I wasn’t exactly hooked on the plot, but rather to the message that it was trying to tell the audience. This is mainly because I was able to relate to the message. A message being no one can define who you are. When I was a freshman in highschool I lost track on who I was so prone to get people to except me especially the non-freshman, that I lost track on who I was. Because I was trying to become someone that I thought everyone wanted to be. It wasn’t only until recently that I realized that the only way to get people to like me was to be myself. I would definitely recommend this play to anyone who has trouble discovering who they are.

Timi - I didn’t know where the play was going in the beginning, but

Timi - I didn’t know where the play was going in the beginning, but as time went on I fell in love with this play. It’s so stupid that it’s endearing and charming. Even though I enjoyed the play I did find the ending a bit rushed right after Leon found out the cursed wasn’t real. I would read again. Tonilee - This play has a deeper meaning than the surface puts out. I found a true theme that I can take to heart and meditate on. I was really surprised. But a good kind of surprise

Bibliography https: //www. nytimes. com/1981/04/07/theater-fools-bysimon. html https: //www. broadwayworld. com/tonyawardspersoninfo. php? nomnam e=Neil%20 Simon

Bibliography https: //www. nytimes. com/1981/04/07/theater-fools-bysimon. html https: //www. broadwayworld. com/tonyawardspersoninfo. php? nomnam e=Neil%20 Simon http: //www. pulitzer. org/winners/neil-simon