Torch Song Trilogy Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. When does Laurel want Arnold to visit?

2. Where is Arnold at the opening of this scene?

3. What happens when Arnold bends over to set a beer can down?

4. How often does Lady sing a torch song?

5. What is the setting at the opening of this scene?

Short Essay Questions

1. How is the conversation between Alan and Arnold stalled?

2. What potential conflicts could ensue by the coming together of Arnold, Ed, and Alan?

3. What musical term is used in this scene and explain why it is used.

4. Describe the situation at the beginning of this scene.

5. What in this scene indicates the differences between the two couples?

6. What message is implied in Laurel's regret at not inviting Alan and Arnold to the wedding?

7. Why does Ed think Laurel is attracted to gay men?

8. Who do you think has the most to lose by this weekend encounter?

9. Describe the opening to this scene.

10. Why do you think Ed Reiss insists that he dates women as well as men?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss the following ideas in a well-developed essay using specific examples both from the text and any research you complete:

1. The title of this scene is "Fugue in a Nursery, Codetta." Define the word "codetta" as it applies to music.

2. How do you think a codetta applies to this scene?

3. What do you think the dominant theme of this scene is? Does this relate to the idea of a codetta?

4. If you were a musician, what type of music would you use in this scene (jazz, classical, rock, heavy metal, rap, etc...) Why?

Essay Topic 2

Choose one of the following topics and write a well-developed essay using specific examples both from the text and any research you complete:

1. Discuss the similarities and differences of the themes among the three plays.

2. Write a possible scene that takes place a year later.

3. Choose one character and follow his/her development and growth (or lack of growth).

Essay Topic 3

In the first "Fugue in a Nursery, Stretto," the author continues to craft the piece metaphorically as a musical fugue, in which the term stretto is used in this scene. Discuss the following ideas in a well-developed essay using specific examples both from the text and any research you complete:

1. Define the term "stretto" in terms of musical composition.

2. Briefly discuss how you think this term is appropriate to the action in this scene.

3. Do you as a reader and/or audience member think the extended metaphor in which the author engages in naming some of the acts is appropriate? What about if one has no musical knowledge?

4. What is most effective and least effective in how the author frames this play around the organization of a fugue?

(see the answer keys)

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