Does space or separation bring us closer together or drive us further apart? Find out in Langley’s “Long Division,” a moving exploration of the many divisions in our world today and how we cope and adapt to them.
“Long Division” is a piece of devised theater, completely written and directed by Langley students, and filmed and edited into a moving short film. They separated into two groups and collaborated to write two separate pieces that encompassed their interpretations of the phrase “long division.” Each piece said so much on its own, but together they brought a cohesive message under one common theme.
The first group, Group A, focused more on emotional division. This piece explored personal conflict through a quarrel between friends, a stubborn family member, and a political divide, but it also ended with hope that humanity can overcome these divisions and improve.
A standout moment in this piece was the scene titled “Covid” in which a voice-over described a monotonous routine of waking up, brushing teeth, going to school, in a never-ending loop. The actors in this scene — Claire Fulton, Kendall Wilson, Conard Racich, Christina Barton, Eli Roberts, Julia Toloczko, Cristina Sayegh, Miky Kassem, Lindsay Muangman, Tiffany Bennett, Hannah Toronto, and Thalia Eid — truly portrayed the monotony and dreary repetition of quarantine that is relatable and topical.
The element that brought this section together was the phenomenal editing. The use of stock footage throughout the piece tied the whole segment together, and the sound mixing was fantastic. Editor Conard Racich used a perfect combination of voice-over, sound effects, and music to really enhance the piece.
The second group, Group 1, focused on the relationship between emotional distance and physical distance. It contained complex thoughts about the meaning of the word “division” and personal anecdotes connected to the theme. It explored how people maintain meaningful connections and relationships even with physical distance.
A standout scene in Group 1’s project was the segment titled “Time Apart.” In this scene, a couple, Devran Johnson and Elizabeth Tippens, reflected on the effect that quarantine has had on their new relationship. One line in particular stood out: “As the world grew farther apart, we grew closer together.” This poignant statement summed up the message of this piece so beautifully, and their moving anecdote emphasized their point.
Overall, “Long Division” was a refreshing interpretation of the concept of division, and an extremely creative format of theater.
Each scene was so personal and unique, but it all came together to deliver a beautiful message: no matter how divided we may seem, we are never alone.