Dances, plays, musicals, books, etc all have one thing in common: usage of historical background. For example, Night Journey by Martha Graham is viewed by the History of Performance class to be full of historical background.
The performance is based off of the greek tale Oedipus. In this tale, Jocasta, the main character of Night Journey, finds out that she has married her son Oedipus and bore offsprings. The discovery of this truth causes her to take her life, and Oedipus carves out his eyes and leave the kingdom.
Now, we all agreed that Night Journey symbolized the dominance men had over women and how weak and strong women can be. Jocasta is weak for killing herself and not taking the consequence of her actions and abandoning her role as queen. She is strong by not accepting Oedipus at the beginning of the performance, in which Oedipus tries to woo her with his skills and physical strength.
The life one expects to have can actually be a lie and cause pain when the truth is revealed. Therefore, the actions that one takes must also be what one truly wants because actions equal both good and bad consequences.