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Theatre Semester Exam

Theatre Semester Exam

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Published by: Autumn on Dec 16, 2008
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IB Theatre II: Semester ExamReview of Theatre Concepts
Test Tuesday, Dec. 16, 2008
Structure: Listing, with elaboration1. 6 Approaches to Developing Character-list each and elaborate (1 sent: example, meaning,procedure, etc.)2. 5 Keys to Performance-list and elaborate if necessary3. 2 Types of International Theatre-briefly describe form/creator and influence onexpansion of theatre in world4. Definitions:-stimulus-workshopping5. Uses:-dramaturgy-morgue
Section 1: Six Approaches to Developing Character
There are 11 (12 counting extra credit) here. Choose your favorite 6.
1. Uta Hagen’s 9 questions-used to create given circumstances2. Stanislavski’s sense/emotional memory-uses personal experiences to understand character experiences,in order to reenact them3. Stanislavski’s “Magic If”-objectively considers possible actions in place of character, todistance actor from character while still considering motivations, etc.4. James Lange theory-Actions result in emotions: frown, and you’ll feel sad.5. Psychological gestures-poses that communicate energy/emotion of character6. Improvisation-create past memories, practice character disposition7. Past history creation (Stella Adler)-imagine past experiences (similar to Uta Hagen)8. Folio (Shakespeare)-use syntax/structure for character/dialogue insight9. Energy level-define character by energy (eg. suspended, vibratory, swing)10. script/textual analysis-understand writer’s intention of character
11. Research (for historical characters)-add historical/social context to character’s life
 And extra credit if you add (as a seventh approach): Costume!
Because sometimes the clothes really do make the man.
Section 2: Five Keys to Performance
1. Actors’ Homework2. Relaxation (Alexander Technique)3. Ensemble (everybody acting the same play)4. Meisner’s in-the-moment reactions5. Step on stage and breathe.
Section 3: International Theatre
Some examples:1.
Created Epic Theatre, which employed “alienation effect”as a way to distance the audience from performance, making themthink about it instead of just enjoy it. Brecht’s theatre was intended asa social tool to provoke analysis.It pioneered the idea of theatre in the primary role of instructionand thought, instead of just entertainment.2.
Theatre of the Absurd
– Began in France after WWII, arising fromthe idea of disconnectedness and brevity of life. Absurd is intended topoint out, among other things, the lack of communication and lack of immediacy among human lives: we’re all going to die quickly, so makeit clear and don’t waste time with stupidity!Absurd was a theatre in which form followed theme: the dialogueof the plays is as crazy and disconnected as the world it satirizes.3.
– Japanese “dance of darkness” also arising from WWII. Verygrotesque, usually slow-moving and not always set to music, Butohemphasizes the primal connections people have to nature.By using environment as a catalyst for motion and expression,butoh brings out a very fundamental aspect of humanity, in order tosatirize or simply emphasize those traits.4.
– A branch of Japanese Noh theatre, kyogen is performedbefore each Noh play as a sort of “opening act.” It is short andcomedic, whereas Noh is long and dramatic. Kyogen tends to play tothe lower classes, showing servants outwitting masters etc. This is a very clear example of lower-class theatre prevailing inpopularity, and its plays combined song, poetry, and dialogue in aunique way.
If you are more familiar with another style, then pick it. Justremember to do 2!
Section 4: Definitions
1. Stimulus: Anything observed, whether a song, poem, picture, sound,person, idea, dream, math problem, mailbox, wound, crack in thesidewalk, news story—anything, essentially, can be a stimulus.Stimuli provoke inspiration. They lead to reflection, which leadsto a concrete idea, which leads to (hopefully) a piece of art/theatre.Sometimes their effect constantly changes until performance.Observation
Creation2. Workshopping: The process of considering a stimulus, discussing it,practically playing with it, going home and doing research, and gettingback in a group to work on it some more hands-on, before going backhome for research—that is workshopping.Stimulus
Lather, rinse,repeat
Section 5: Uses of Things
: a collection of images/technical thing for the followingpurposes:-stimuli waiting to happen-production morgue (research conglomerate, basically)-resources for an unforeseen future (ooh, a picture of a barn! Imight need to design a barn set one day! I’ll save it, just in case!)-show-specific (preparation/record of references used for a show)2.
: The person who does all the research for a show. Thisguy (or gal) checks up on historical context, generalcostume/furniture/prop/light fixture info, while also researching, if necessary, specific acting needs (like for an unfamiliar form of theatre,eg. Vietnamese water puppetry, or Brecht). All of their research is usedto make the show as clean and accurate as possible.Example from real life! Seth Watson was the dramaturg for Twelfth Night our sophomore year. He researched the meanings of terms that weren’t defined by the script, and also became our stagecombat trainer/reference for fight scenes (something a little beyondthe realm of normal dramaturgy).

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