1 Devising Unit - PowerPoint Presentation

1 Devising Unit
1 Devising Unit

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Ten Stage Process Real Educational Drama 2 Higher Internal Assessment Requirements Drama Skills Outcome 1 The learner will 1 Apply complex drama skills by 11 Responding to stimuli including text to develop ideas for drama ID: 512469 Download Presentation


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Devising UnitTen Stage Process

Real Educational Drama Slide2


Higher Internal Assessment Requirements

Drama Skills

Outcome 1 The learner will:

1 Apply complex drama skills by:

1.1 Responding to stimuli, including text, to develop ideas for drama

1.2 Exploring form, genre, structure and style

1.3 Developing and communicating ideas

Outcome 2

The learner will:

2 Contribute creatively to the drama by:

2.1 Planning, devising and directing a drama

2.1 Using complex acting skills to portray character to an audience

2.3 Evaluating their own work and that of others Slide3


The Devising ProcessStage One:

Respond to Stimulus Stage Two:

Research and Offer IdeasStage Three:

Focus – Discuss Ideas for Roles and Situations.

Stage Four:

Gather & Collect Information. Discuss Form & Structure

Stage Five:

Build Up Text. Discuss Space.

Stage Six:

Rehearse and Re- Focus.

Stage Seven:

First Sharing and Review

Stage Eight:

Add Theatre Arts

Stage Nine:


Stage Ten:

Evaluation Slide4


Devising your own Work

Stage One: Gathering your own Stimulus.

Think back over all the devising tasks you have completed since August

- Musical Theatre/ Monster in the Hall

- Movement/ Superheroes

- Pantomime/ Alice in Wonderland


Chat Show



-Drama/ Calendar Girls

- Historical Drama/ MousetrapSlide5


Guidance on completion of Rehearsal Diary Date of rehearsal

: The date is written here

 Rehearsal No.: The number of rehearsal should be recorded


Actors absent:

Who didn’t attend the rehearsal?

What did you achieve in today’s rehearsal:

Write down everything you did in the rehearsal.

Did you do anything extra?

What is your opinion of the rehearsal today?

Do you feel the rehearsal went well or badly?


Did you achieve all of the targets you set yourself in the last rehearsal?

Were you happy with your own contribution to the rehearsal?

Were you happy with the contribution of others to the rehearsal?

What problems did you encounter during today’s rehearsal?

Write down here all the problems or difficulties you faced during the rehearsal.

Were there any factors that meant you could not rehearse as planned?

Did you find anything particularly challenging or demanding?

Did you find any particular part of what you were doing difficult?

What solutions did you find to these problems?

Did you have to make any changes to:


The moves for the actors in your production

Where the actors enter or exit from

Your interpretation of your character

Your reaction to others characters




What are your targets or plans for the next rehearsal?THESE TARGETS SHOULD BE SPECIFIC TO



These may vary from rehearsal to rehearsal, some examples may be:

To read through and discuss script, taking into consideration subtext.

To discuss and agree the meaning of the section.

To describe set design, entrances and exits.

To block the moves of the performers.

To develop and enhance characterisation.

To discuss and rehearse the delivery of lines.

To add theatre arts; sound, lights, costume, make-up, props & set.

To have a run through of the entire section.

To do a run through without scripts




Stage Two: Research and Offer Ideas

Now that you have looked over the different examples of stimuli, you will need to totally immerse yourself in researching and discovering as much as you can about that stimulus.

Make a list of the types of things your group should research. Who will research what? What information do you want to find/discover?

Which sources of information are you going to use?

How will you include a balance of views and voices?

How will you find inspiration in other art works that relate to the stimulus or theme?

How will you identify and research the work of other practitioners associated with the theme?

Stage Three:

Focus – Discuss Ideas for Roles and Situations.

When everyone is familiar with the material you have gathered, you should begin trying to group the 'bits' together under the following headings:

Ideas for characters and roles

Ideas for situations and possible dilemmas

Think about the following questions.

What will you choose to keep from your research and what will you now put on one side?

Have you considered the audience in making this selection?

What should the social function of the performance be; should it educate and/or should it entertain?

Will the performance include both realist and non-realist styles?Will it include presentational and representational theatre? Slide8


Stage Four: Gather & Collect Information. Discuss Form & Structure



is the overall style

of your presentation, for example: rehearsed improvisation, scripted presentation, movement, dance drama, mime, documentary, radio play, puppet show, musical, soap opera, chat show, monologue.

You can use the


form throughout your drama or show ideas using different


These are alternative ways of presenting

all or part(s)

of your work, for example: tableau, soliloquy, flashback, voice over, narration, slow motion.


Structure is the way in which time, place and action are put together, for example:

Scene 1 – morning, kitchen

Scene 2 – afternoon, the park

Scene 3 – evening, kitchenA scene is a part of a drama which happens in one place and at one time. The structure of your presentation will help the audience understand it, leading up to key moments and to the central point in the drama. You can choose a linear structure where the action unfolds from beginning to middle to end, or a non-linear structure where the action unfolds through shifts in time and place. Having decided on a focus, you would then structure the drama to make this focus clear to the audience, using suitable conventions. Slide9


Stage Five: Build Up Text. Discuss Space.

In your group decide on your anchor moments. Not the whole plot but some key moments, or the scenario, which is a summary of the plot.

Decide how these moments should be ordered. Remember that they don't have to be

organised chronologically - you can move backwards and forwards in time using the most appropriate scene as your starting point.

Place your anchor moments in order. How close together are these scenes in terms of time and setting? Write a list of these moments to show the 'gaps' in between the anchor moments. Do the 'gaps' need filling in with additional moments, which lead up to, or follow on from the anchors? Decide what fills the ‘gaps’.

If your anchor moments are representational then these kinds of link will add a presentational dimension to your work.

The anchor moments are crucial to establishing your piece. You may not want to leave these moments to chance and to improvisation. Scripting the anchor moments will fix them for the anchors.

Draw a ground plan for your performance showing the division between audience and performance space. Locate the scenes in the performance space - where exactly will each scene played? Now ask yourself who you have made these decisions and whether you could find a more original or interesting arrangement. Consider the following:

Where is your performance space?

How physically close to the audience do you want your actors to be?

Will the audience stay in a fixed position, or might they be asked to move, as in a promenade performance?

How will the audience be arranged? Front-on? In the round? Around three sides In groups within the performance space?

How can exits and entrances be used to effect? Might the actors move through the audience, for instance?

Will there be a consistent use of space for particular locations? Will family scenes always be played in one place and street scenes in another? How will the logic of your choice be made clear to an audience?



Stage Six: Rehearse and Re- Focus.

Go back and consider the purpose of your improvisation. What did you want to achieve.

Think about what you originally set out to do. Does your drama do this or do you need to modify your improvisation?

You should now spend as much time as possible rehearsing your play, ready for performance.

Stage Seven:

First Sharing and Review

Ask another group to watch your performance and give you honest feedback about what works well and what needs work. You may want to record their responses .

Stage Eight:

Add Theatre Arts


How can the 'look of the play' be established through design features? What props or setting will be used and how will an appropriate theme be established through the choice of shapes,


and textures? The design should offer a commentary on the plot and characters rather than merely provide a realistic landscape. Your ideas about the relationship between the theme that you have chosen and the particulars of your plot and characters (the overall intention) can be expressed through your choices concerning the design of the performance.

Technical Theatre

How will technical effects be used to create 'attractions' for the audience? Remember that lighting, sound, video images and other technical devices can be used to offer an interpretation or commentary on the plot and characters. In the modern theatre these effects are rarely used to faithfully recreate realistic settings. Cinema does that better. Lighting and sound can be used to describe moods, feelings and portents of what will happen next as well as to signal might/day and the sounds of birds! But again, remember that if you are using technical effects to express ideas and the theme you need to be sure that the audience will accept your combining of realist and non-realist elements in performance. Is some of he realist scenes are lit using strong


and express the mood but others are not, the audience will question why this is and look for the 'logic' of your choices - why certain scenes are lit this way and not others. So again be consistent in whatever choices you make. Slide11


Stage Nine: Performance

Ask yourself the following questions before you arrange your performance.

How will the performance space be prepared?

Where, when and how does the performance begin and end for both performers and audience?

What criteria will you use to judge the success and effectiveness of your performance?

Have you


the initial vision that you had for the performance?

Were some of your initial ideas




Were some ideas technically too difficult to



Were there problems with people, time, space, technical support?

Might the performance have worked better with a different audience in a different space?Would you want to repeat or continue to develop the ideas and themes in you performance?Stage Ten: Evaluation Describe your chosen stimulus. 1 markDiscuss the storyline of your presentation and how well it fitted together. 3 marksDescribe and justify the form and structure used by the group in your presentation. How well did these work? 4 marksDescribe the rehearsal process that your group undertook. Describe how you developed your ideas from the decision on stimulus, characters, situations and storyline. Describe how you used any theatre arts in your production (Costume, props, lighting, sound, set, make-up). You should discuss any problems you had during the rehearsal process and how you overcame these problems. 12 marksEvaluate your group’s performance. How did the rest of your class react? If you could change anything for a second performance what would you change? How well did the rest of your group perform? Were there any problems during the performance? How did you solve these? How do you rate your own performance in your presentation? 10 marks

Total 30 marks

There are notes on the following pages to help you complete this. Slide12

Writing about Improvisation

When writing a unit of work on a series of improvisation lessons, begin by considering the content/ issues raised and think about the drama skills and techniques used. Try to write in one or two lines what the topic is about. For example:

The topic was about stress and the different ways it affects people.

You can begin by stating what the topic is about and you could make some statement about what you have learned. For example:

Our topic was about loyalty. It has brought to my attention the fact that being loyal does not necessarily always mean being completely honest.

You should then go on and explain how the drama work has made you draw such a conclusion.

Think about the drama skills and techniques used in the project. Possibly list them as a reference to remind you as you write up your unit. The main technique used will probably be role-play. Be aware of how any techniques used in the role-play have contributed to your understanding of the content and credibility of the drama. For example:

In my role-play I played a pregnant teenager about to tell her mother about the situation. In the role-play I did not tell my mother straight away – I kept asking her questions about teenage pregnancy. I did this to test how she might react when I told her about my situation. To me, this seemed a realistic way of tackling the situation. As I was asking the questions I was leaving long pauses between each one. This allowed me to prepare what I was going to say next and helped build up the worries my character might be experiencing. The pauses also created an intense atmosphere helping both of us to become involved in the situation. This piece of drama helped me to realise how important silence is in creating atmosphere.

Writing about the language you or the others have used in your role-play gives good evidence of your understanding of the content and the drama skills. For example:Slide13

When I was in role as a miner, some of the language I used was not appropriate. For example, the time was 1832 but when I was addressing the other miners about the owners of the mine I used a modern expression: ‘We’re being ripped off.’

You can discuss aspects of the body language you use in your drama, for example:

Andrew played the child. He sat slumped in the chair with his arms folded and refused to look at his parents. We decided Andrew should sit this way because we wanted to show he was unhappy.

In the next example, a pupil comments on how her body language changed during the role-play:

I walked over boldly to show that my character was annoyed. I wasn’t feeling strong, just trying to appear so. When I confronted him my whole body language changed. At one time I even stepped back. I stuttered, I mumbled and kept repeating myself. I twiddled my fingers and kicked my feet, My partner realised he had the upper hand and acted as if he couldn’t care. The role-play was spoiled when my partner pushed me as he walked away from me. I felt this was inappropriate.

Often your teacher will create situations where you can write in role. Writing in role shows how you understand the situation. It is a good idea to include extracts of your writing in role with some analysis. For example:



The trenches are cold, wet and dreary. We will be going over the top in one hour. See you when I get back.

Love Bill.

This is a piece of writing I completed when we were being soldiers in the trenches. Now that I have had time to consider it, I think it is not really very realistic. It is too short and lacking any emotion. If someone was going over the top, there is the chance that they may be killed. Perhaps they would write a longer and more meaningful letter.


Diary Extract:

William was taken to Durham jail last night. I will see him on Thursday. How will I pass these two days? The children have been taunted by other children in our street. Their dad’s not a murderer. William is innocent but I don’t believe he will be set free. They will hang him. No one has the right to do that. How strong will I be on that day? What will I do with the children? I’ll have to be there. I don’t want to go. I won’t be able to look at him but he’ll need me there. Maybe he shouldn’t see me. I don’t know what to do. I think, I write, I pray but there’s never any sort of answer.

This is an extract from my diary when I was playing

Isobella Jobling

in the role-play. It was written three hours (drama time) after I was given the news that William would be hanged on Saturday. As Isobella

, my mind hopped from thought to thought: thinking about William, thinking about how I would cope, and thinking about the children. I think the work is effective and shows my understanding of my role. Maybe the diary writing might have been a little more emotional.

As you create improvisation work, you will make decisions. Try to note them and, more importantly, state why you made them. For example:

We decided to put together two scenes showing a poor family and a rich family. We chose breakfast as the time for both as it showed both families in typical everyday situations and the contrast between the two could be emphasised.


The drama needed to end with the witches vanishing. To symbolise this, we had them returning to a lower level and curling up. We also thought it was a good idea to end the drama with Macbeth on a higher level than Banquo as he had more status at that moment.


We had the two children standing in the same position alongside each other to represent the equality that should have existed between them. We placed the teacher slightly forward of the children to show that she was in charge and was leading the children.

You can also state what might have been a better idea:

On reflection, the final freeze-frame could have been more symbolic if I had held an empty beer glass upside down. This would have indicated that money for the business had run out. Slide15

The breakfast scene made its point, but maybe we could have created two further brief scenes to emphasise the differences between the families. Perhaps someone receiving a gift, or someone buying some clothes.


The scene with the witches could have been improved by using slow motion as the witches curled up.

Writing about your Prepared Presentation

There are two main considerations here:

The development – how the ideas have been formulated and what changes have been made to the piece throughout rehearsals.

The presentation – the performance.

It is probable that each time you run through either part or all of the improvisation, you will make changes or small adjustments. These need to be noted so that at the end of the project these notes can be written up into your unit of work.

With a good set of working notes you will be able to evaluate the process well and make precise references to the development of the drama.

How you use space is important and there are often changes to make here. You may make changes to the blocking. Blocking is how the actors are positioned in the acting area:

You may make adjustments so that the actors can be clearly seen by the audience.

You may decide that someone needs to move further up or downstage so that when someone crosses from left to right they do not have to walk round someone. Keeping the stage traffic flowing easily helps with the pace and overall effect of the piece.

The blocking may symbolise something.

If you note this down in your written work and justify your reasons this is good analytical work. For example:Slide16

We placed John centre stage for the second scene because he was the main character of the story. We did not move John. We wanted the other characters to come to him. In a way, this showed he had some sort of power over them. As he was in the centre we could bring characters on from both sides of the stage thus avoiding any problems of people on the stage being in anyone else’s way.

If the actors continually make exits and entrances this can spoil the flow of the piece. You can comment on different techniques you have used. As you justify them, this is again good analysis. For example:

In our short piece of drama, each of us played three characters. In order to save time and too much unnecessary movement in the acting area, each time we changed character we would move upstage and face out of the drama thus indicating to the audience that the character was not in the drama. As we took on our next role, we simply turned into the drama.


Our brief improvisation showed the thoughts a teenager was having about his mother and father always arguing. At first, we had a brief scene with the mother and father arguing, then they would exit. Their son would enter and talk directly to the audience about the problem with his mother and father. I liked the idea of the teenager talking to the audience but we needed to make it more effective. We did this by keeping the parents on stage and getting them to hold a freeze at a particular point in their argument. The teenager entered and moving from stage left to right as he spoke he could point at the freeze and talk about his parents to the audience. I felt this had more impact because there was a picture there always reminding the audience of the problem. We decided that after the teenager spoke of the problem. We decided that after the teenager spoke he would exit, then his parents would begin arguing again.

You will make changes to the characters you create by using drama techniques to develop the character. For example, you may use a character profile technique to make up further information. You may use freeze frame, hot-seating or creating a scene that involves your character before the main drama story begins. Explain the techniques you use and how they helped you develop character. Being able to use drama terms correctly is important in written work. Slide17

You may want to comment on how you used dialogue and voice patterns so that it could have the correct emotional impact. For example:

When I was in role I spoke quietly and slowly to show I was worried about telling Tom I was going to leave him. ……………………………………………………………………………………………………..

In our drama I played a girl who was leaving her boyfriend. At first when we practised the scene we both did a lot of shouting. In order to give contrast to the noise of the argument, before I left I decided to whisper my last line aggressively. This created a better dramatic impact because of the contrast and it seemed to force the audience to listen carefully to what I felt was the most important line.

If your drama is more abstract in form you may analyse particular use of words. For example:

We created a poem to explain to the audience about a baby who had been abandoned. We described the baby as ‘defenceless’. We thought this word let the audience know how weak the baby was. Claire placed the baby centre stage so it would be the main focus for the audience. At the end of the poem we stood still, lifted our heads and whispered to the audience the word ‘Helplessness.’ We repeated it over and over, eventually fading it out. This was to symbolise that the baby could be dying. Hopefully the silence at the end of the drama left the audience wondering what was going to happen to the baby.

During the first presentation you need to consider if there is any difference between that performance and the final dress rehearsal. Note any developments that take place if the presentation is performed more than once. Consider what difference any audience makes to the performance. If it makes you more nervous, then what difference does this make to the performance? For example:

Sarah was nervous and spoke too quickly. Unfortunately, it was difficult for the audience to understand some of her dialogue. It was evident from the conversations afterwards with members of the audience that they had missed important parts of the plot.

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