The Arts Project: Day 4

Today began with a look at refining and improving. We discussed how things could be refined and improved, from adding detail, to rehearsing, to improving the script, to adding technical elements, to changing the direction. Then we gave the students 3 hours to do just that. What they came up with was amazing. From costumes to dance routines to layered vocal sounds to slam poetry … Continue reading The Arts Project: Day 4

Performing on the Road – What’s in my Performance Box?

I go on the road a lot in performance. We have taken groups to different areas to perform, including overseas. I have performed shows that have different venues on different days. As well as difficult locations to perform in. What do I take with me? To be completely frank with you, I am a master at preparing for a performance; as a director, stage manager … Continue reading Performing on the Road – What’s in my Performance Box?

The 12 Plays of Christmas – Day 11 – Henry VIII

Welcome to the 11th Play of Christmas.  Today we shall look at Shakespeare’s “Henry VIII”. Unusually, “Henry VIII” isn’t performed that often, which is a sad thing because it is a great play.  Following the story of Henry VIII through the end of his first marriage to Catherine of Aragon and his second marriage to Ann Boleyn.  The actual story is gripping, and adding the … Continue reading The 12 Plays of Christmas – Day 11 – Henry VIII

The 12 Plays of Christmas – Day 9 – Othello

Welcome to Day 9.  Traditionally the 9th day of Christmas is for the well-traveled saints… and who do we know who is well-traveled?  The Moor of Venice. Othello is a well crafted tragedy setting up the relationship between the Moor Othello, a general, and his fair wife, Desdemona.  It doesn’t help that they initially ran off in secret to get married, or that Othello overlooked … Continue reading The 12 Plays of Christmas – Day 9 – Othello

Masters in Creative Writing

Recently I started working towards my Masters in Creative Writing with Massey University.  And I do mean working towards.  I have completed one post-grad paper (yay), and now I am waiting to hear if I have been accepted into the programme.  I did well in the post-grad paper, so I am hoping for acceptance.  (I am putting this here– I write in NZ English, so … Continue reading Masters in Creative Writing

Verfremdungseffeckt in practise

When dealing with Epic Theatre and Brecht, Verfremdungseffeckt or the distancing effect becomes an interesting point to make.  Basically the whole concept is about connecting to the message rather than connecting to the character. This site here has an awesome description of Verfremdungseffeckt. Here is a video of my students experimenting with “The Visions of Simone Machard” using Verfremdungseffeckt in an Epic style. Continue reading Verfremdungseffeckt in practise

The Visions of Simone Machard – Bertolt Brecht

I love Brecht.  This year instead of looking at one of his more well known plays, we took a dive into a rarely performed play – “The Visions of Simone Machard”.  The basic storyline is of a young girl in France during the Nazi occupation, who has visions of Joan of Arc, and tries to save her brother, and her country. I cannot recommend the … Continue reading The Visions of Simone Machard – Bertolt Brecht