Collaborative Theatre for Beginners
Collaborative Theatre for Beginners is designed for students who have no background in creating theatre beyond improvising short scenes in their school drama classes. Classes will explore how theatre’s inherent limitations can be turned into strengths to create meaningful and thought-provoking pieces of drama. Key areas to be studied:
Using Spatial configurationsand the performer’s relationship with the audienceto shape a piece;
Movement(including gestures and facial expressions), with and without dialogue or other vocals, as a means of independently create meaning;
Improvisationas a tool for generating content and refining characters;
Employing sound,lightingand musicfrom the inception of the creative process (not as a technical element that gets tacked on right before opening); and
Different theatrical conventionsto enhance and lend variety to a piece of theatre.
The class will culminate in a showcase of short (4-6 minutes) student-created group pieces around a central theme chosen by the instructor(s).
Length– Three hours per week (likely 1.5 hours on a weekday evening and 1.5 hours on the weekend) for approximately four months. As we begin the actual creative process, each group will be expected to sort out amongst themselves additional times to rehearse their piece. There will also be additional time before the performance to sort out technical issues.
Advanced Collaborative Theatre
Advanced Collaborative Theatre picks up on the skills and techniques learned in the beginning class and enhances them through the study of different systems for creating theatre. Classes will look at how different theatrical practitioners (e.g. – Brecht, Artaud, Boal and Berkoff) and companies (e.g. – Tectonic, Frantic Assembly, Kneehigh) create pieces and will explore specific theatrical styles, such as documentary theatre, Theatre of the Absurd and physical theatre. The class will culminate in longer (15-20 minute) student-created performances around themes chosen by each group.
Prerequisite– Collaborative Theatre for Beginners
Length– Three hours per week (likely 1.5 hours on a weekday evening and 1.5 hours on the weekend) for approximately four months. As we begin the actual creative process, each group will be expected to sort out amongst themselves additional times to rehearse their piece. There will also be additional time to sort out technical issues.
Collaborative Theatre Capstone
The Collaborative Theatre Capstone is an extended project where the students will become a theatre company and create a significant piece of theatre (roughly an hour in length) from scratch. The overall theme and style of the piece will be decided by the group, although the class may be repeated with a specific style or genre (i.e. – an original musical, adaptation of classic literature, verbatim theatre, etc.) stated in advance of enrollment. All creative and production decisions (including publicity, marketing and budgeting) will also be made by the group, although the class instructor(s) will serve in an advisory/supervisory capacity to offer guidance and practical advice and serve as a financial/logistical check. The end project will be 2-3 public performances of the piece in front of a paying audience.
Prerequisite– Advanced Collaborative Theatre
Length– Three hours per week (likely all on a single weekday evening or weekend day) of dedicated class time, with instructor(s) present, for approximately five months. However, the group will be expected to sort out additional times (at least an additional three hours per week) to plan and rehearse the piece and address production issues. There will also be additional time before the performances to sort out technical issues.