Drama club: teaching ensemble work
Students understand the experience of drifting off in class. The concept of the daydream is one with which they will all be familiar. The purpose of this scheme of work is to allow students to investigate the idea of the daydream and how to experiment with different methods of bringing the idea to life onstage. It allows them to develop a range of non-naturalistic skills, and also to improve the quality of their work using simple physical theatre skills that will look strikingly effective on stage.
Students start their main performance piece in the relatively straightforward setting of the classroom but then, with some imagination, careful rehearsal and
some background sound effects, they can go where they want, be who they want and create a sophisticated transition that takes them into a more surreal style of theatre. It also allows them to investigate changing rhythm and pace within a piece of drama, and how that can impact on their work and movement as a group. Furthermore, it encourages them to consider the importance of creating an ending that is visually striking, exaggerated in style and in keeping with the demands of the piece.
A small number of interconnected scenes are built up over two or more lessons, allowing students to improve and refine their work as they go. Most importantly, it frees them from the demands of naturalistic drama, encourages exaggeration and closely coordinated team work and allows them to develop different emotions onstage and encourage different reactions from the audience within the piece. It allows opportunities for basic physical theatre and the creation of more experimental, non-naturalistic styles.
Number of lessons: 2