This course is a basic introduction to acting technique for the stage. It is designed to develop the ability to play dramatic action honestly and believably, using realistic/naturalistic material as well as self-scripted autobiographical writing. Course work includes exercises and improvisations exploring awareness, relaxation, observation, the senses, voice, and physical and emotional life. Work in preparation of the monologue will be introduced. Scene work, in the second half of the term, will focus on breaking down the play, analysis, identity, motivation and action. Out-of-class assignments include required readings from acting texts and plays. Attendance at, as well as responses to, a number of stage productions scheduled during the term is required. A commitment to regular journal writing in the form of an Observation Notebook will be expected. Open to all classes.
As a set of staged practices rich with social context, theater has sought to document, engage, and affect communities. This course introduces and explores theater from page to stage as a live performing art. Topics include the relationship between theater and society (historical and contemporary), dramatic structure, theatrical representation, and the crafts of theater artists such as directors, designers, playwrights, and actors. We will also engage with live performances and video archives of past performances.