LuigiPirandello’s play Six Characters in Searchof an Author is a play that draws attention to its own fictional status asa theatrical pretence. The play was originally written in Italian language withthree acts and was published in the year 1921. This drama is an absurdistmetatheatrical one. With the creation of this play Pirandello had broken thetraditional conventions of theatrical performances.Theplay presents the arrival of six characters in search of their author comesfrom nowhere.
The unexpected arrival of the characters created a great stiramong the audience. On the stage a rehearsal of the Pirandello’s Mixing It Upwas going to take place when they came. The characters referred their drama assomething cannot be enacted on the conventional theatre. Analyzing thedialogues of the characters we can understand that their main concern istheatre and acknowledging the theatrical situation. This often reveals themetadramatic exploration of the nature of the theatre. Therelationship between the author (creator) and the characters (created) isclearly portrayed in this play. The six characters were abandoned by theircreator, at this point they felt disappointed. However, they go in search ofanother author who will be able to accomplish their wishes.
This situationthrows light into the relation between creator and the created. Moreover, theauthorial betrayal does not make them as victims since they can be realized byan another author. As far as Pirandello is concerned, the characters need to berecognized by their author. Hence he allowed one of his characters to say thatone must have luck to be born as a character in a play. Regarding the earliercharacters of other plays their roles are submissive, yielding to the author. Theybelieved that whatever the author has done will be in favour of the plot andthem. In this drama, the manager agreed to stage the characters’ drama and wassupposed to put the props.
The stepdaughter criticized the manager for standingin favour of the author. Inmost modern contexts, characters are in want of recognition and they show theirresponses too. They are also ready to point out their objection againstauthorial domination. Their inclination to freedom leads to estrangement and alienation.Ina way the play is self-reflexive as it openly showcases the processes behindthe artful composition. The concept of absurdity in the drama made it to standby its own. The manager in the play divides the drama into acts to thestepdaughter and the Father. The discussion on theatre and theatrical aspectsis a better way to enact the lived emotions of the characters which adds to thecredo of the play.
So it is said to be a meta-theatre.