Topic: Focus and/or Place/Space
Key Idea (Explanation of a concept explored)
We learned many things in drama this week, however the main three things were focus, placing and space. When performing, it is really important to know where people are going to focus on since you can use that to show something with out making it too obvious. Then we can use the focus and create tension. (We learned how to create tension last week!) The placing on the stage is really important because some places are easier to get the focus of the audience. On stage there are 9 parts to it. The parts are upstage right, upstage center, upstage left, right, center, left, downstage right, downstage center, downstage left. The main focus for most of audience is downstage right, downstage center, and downstage left. The set up for the names are from the performer’s point of view not the audience’s . This is called blocking and it is really useful for back stage work and rehearsals with technical aspect which I am good at.
Approach (Process in class or in rehearsal)
I only attended half class of drama this week so I am not a master of focus, placing, and space however we did some activity in the first half of the class. In the class we were in groups and we were suppose to make a scene of bank robbery with only have 1 person saying 3 words, 1 saying 2, and 1 say 1 word. I was in the group with Garrel and Kosei. This was a good activity for focus because we had to choose the right words and we had to be focused. In the scene Kosei and Garrel was robbers and I was the bank clerk. They would come in and scream at me since they were robbers and they had to act strong. Garrel said 3 words and Kosei spoke 2 words. It was really tough for me because I have to respond using 1 word.
Outcome (Achievements, Problems, Solutions)
As a class we did a focus activity. There were three scenes and there were different focus and tension in each one. First one was just walking normally and there were no focus no tension nothing. No one made eye contact no one did anything. The second was scene was finding a pen. It was really interesting that as an audience we were looking at kent’s hand and where his eyes were looking at. This was a good activity to know about how people can create focus with just a simple thing. The third scene was about bomb. Yes BOMB 😀 In this scene Kent became a person who takes out bomb. However he first had to find where the bomb is. As an audience, we looked around the whole stage to see where the bomb is. Not only that we looked at his movement since bomb is dangerous and it had tension. When Kent screamed out “I FOUND THE BOMB!” Everybody in the audience looked his way and was concentrated. This showed that if there is tension and there is a small ignition material then it can create the whole play to have a excited mood.
Connections (between ideas, skills and practice > even live theatre)
Key Idea: This week’s key point was tension. Tension is a way to make the audience get hooked and get interested into the show. A good way to see if you have tension in the play is to observe the audience and see if they are getting hooked into the scene or not. There are many kinds of tension, there are expected, unexpected, task, mystery and many more.
Approach: In class we looked at tension by playing many useful games. For example, The Holly Hat, Medusa’s crown these games showed us how tension can be made in different ways. In the Holly Hat, the tension was unexpected because no one knew when Mr. M was going to scream or what he was going to do. What made the game so hard was that we weren’t allowed to grin, smile or even make unnecessary movements. The other game, Medusa’s crown was also an unexpected game because we didn’t know when the Medusa was going turn back to see if the other players were taking the crown or not. The objective of this game was to get the crown all the way to the other side of the room. However when people were caught moving or caught with the crown by the Medusa, they had to go all the way back to the beginning line. Going back to Holly hat, it was interesting how people reacted. In our class there were few kinds of people. There were people who bursted into laugh because of tension broken by Mr. M’s singing or random screams. There were people who bursted into laughter because of other starting to giggle and there were people who stayed calm even if anything happened. First time there were many of the first type and the second type. However when we did it the second time, the tension became more of the expected side so there were less people bursting into laughter. However some people for example Takumi still bursted into laughter even after he has seen what was going to happen.
Outcome: As a class split out into 4 or 5 groups and made 2 minutes play for a summative project. In the play we were required to create a lot of tension. In our play we made a ritual by having a scarifies. Our main tension was task. Tension of task is where the task is really hard so if you make a mistake people can get killed or get in trouble. In my opinion, we have successfully created tension in our play since there weren’t many people talking while we did our part that had lots of tension. Not only we had tension of task, we also added tension of the unexpected because we thought it was interesting to have more than one kind of tension.
Tension is often used in movies but also in books. In books authors uses words to create tension but in theatre people can use the way people act, sound effects, and lights. This is where my favourite part of drama comes in, lighting. Lighting can change the scene’s mood dramatically. The mood can be changed with tension. If I can get light set up to be gloomy and dark then it is more likely that people are going to feel the tension.
Overall I think I did a good job this week on creating tension. Our group have done well on our summative project even though we could have done a bit better with the plot.