This is a module about the implications of Peter Brook's idea that anything can be seen as 'an act of theatre’. Students will be invited to see beyond their own default assumptions about theatre, and introduced to a diverse range of methods of devising their own performances. In practical workshops, they will learn about professional practice, warming up, performance skills, and collaborative group work; and will explore the possibilities of creating performance from a range of starting points, including (for example), space, body, voice, text, or character. This practical exploration will sit alongside an introduction to related aspects of history and theory. In seminars, students will be introduced to such concepts as theatre spaces, traditional play texts, non-traditional theatre texts, historical approaches to characterisation (e.g. Stanislavski, Mike Leigh), physical approaches to acting (e.g. Grotowski, Lecoq), and the different models for engaging an audience (e.g. Brecht, Boal). The experience will be enhanced by 4 ‘Theatre Forums’ within which students experience a short piece of performance by Theatre Companies/Performers who have emerged from the department, followed by an ‘open discussion forum, situating the work within the world of performance, and the influence that their university learning had in relation to their current practice. Students will be assessed by a short in-class performance and an essay. This module (together with Making Performance 2) will offer a solid foundation for all modules in years two and three which involve creative performance work.
This module appears in the following module collections.
Total contact hours: 72
Private study hours: 228
Total study hours: 300
Method of assessment
Essay (2000 words) (40%)
Seminar Contribution (20%).
Allain, Paul and Jen Harvie (2006), The Routledge Companion to Theatre and Performance, London: Routledge
Allen, Tony (2002), Attitude: Wanna Make Something Of It?, Glastonbury: Gothic Image
Artaud, Antonin (1993), Theatre and its Double, London: Calder
Baugh, Christopher (2005), Theatre, Performance and Technology, Basingstoke: Palgrave
Bradwell, Mike (2010), The Reluctant Escapologist, London, Nick Hern
Brook, Peter (1990), The Empty Space, London: Penguin
Double, Oliver (2007), 'Punk Rock as Popular Theatre', New Theatre Quarterly, Vol. 23 No, 1
Johnstone, Keith (2007), Impro: Improvisation and Theatre, London: Methuen
McGrath, John (1996), A Good Night Out: Popular Theatre: Audience, Class and Form, London: Nick Hern
Pickering, Kenneth and Mark Woolgar (2009), Theatre Studies, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan
See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
- Re-evaluate and question their default understanding of what theatre is, and understand diverse and varied approaches to making performances.
- Devise performances from a range of starting points, for example, space, body, voice, text, character, etc.
- Work creatively and collaboratively in small groups, to create, rehearse and perform material.
- Demonstrate a range of performing and creative skills.
- Read and analyse dramatic texts for theatre, understanding their specific theatrical quality.
- Identify and 'read' a range of theatrical texts beyond the traditional play script.
- Understanding of some of the central practices and theories of twentieth century performance.
- Articulate ideas, concepts and propositions about theatre and the processes of making it in writing, supported by experience and research
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Credit level 4. Certificate level module usually taken in the first stage of an undergraduate degree.
- ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
- The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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