Hi! For the last term of the school year we learned Drama. This replaced our previous course of Art.
Before we started Drama, I’d felt pretty nervous. I didn’t know very much about Drama. I used to learn it as a child, but not for a very long time. I’d also tried out for the musical, but hadn’t gotten in, so I’d been nervous about whether or not I would be able to get through the class because of not being very confident with performance. It was comforting to know that I already knew my teacher, but this was still frightening. However, now that I’ve gotten through a year of Drama, I feel a lot more comfortable. From the start, we were taught that in order to have a successful performance, we all needed to work as an ensemble. I think that this helped our class to come together. In many other classes, when we were all working together, we would go off into our separate social groups. After a while, however, in the circumstances we finally came together. We definitely came closer together as a group, and I feel more comfortable with Drama.
In Drama, I learned different skills such as; focus, pace, and power. Focus in Drama is staying in character and not getting distracted easily. At the beginning of the year, I was easily distracted. Whenever I went up on stage, I felt as though everyone was going to laugh or not like my performance so I would get nervous. Even if I did a good performance or not, I always wanted to get it over with. This affected my pace. Pace in Drama is when you regulate your lines to fit the situation. I was unable to do this, and always would rush through my lines. I would also drop my voice, so that sometimes the audience wouldn’t be able to hear me. Now that it is the end of the year; I am focused whenever I perform and it is harder to throw me off, I can regulate my lines so that I don’t speed up, and I also can project my voice to the back of the room, loud enough so that everyone can hear me.
I also learned different techniques such as soundscape and tableau/freeze frame. Soundscape in Drama is when a group of people collaborate to create a setting for the audience. They would all have certain sounds, coming in or staying at different times. I really liked soundscape because of how it could help to set a setting, without any words, and how it could help to influence the audience’s emotion. I think that it is a very important skill for Drama and like to use it at the beginnings of each of my performances, as a nice starting point. Another one of my favourites is tableau. Tableau, or freeze frame, is when all actors “freeze” to form a picture. Each of them with a frozen action, helping to tell a story. I really liked it because of how, also, it didn’t require any dialogue, but was still a challenge. You had to be really focused to master it, and also know what position to stop in so that you both; A) Told the story, and B) were able to balance. I, personally, liked the soundscape better.
Examples of Tableau – Little Red Riding Hood
#1 Wolf Watching Little Red Riding Hood’s Mother give her a basket
#2 Wolf attacking Little Red Riding Hood, once disguised as Grandma,
has now revealed true identity
My best memory from Drama would be when we went to go see Footloose. I found it really interesting because of the musical elements, the actors’s focus, and expression. The musical elements of singing and dancing to the music really made it more appealing to me as an audience member. The actors’s focus was really set in; the audience often talked during the performances and sometimes even would squeal when the boys poked the girls (other school, not CDNIS) and made quite a lot of noise. But still the cast continued to act and dance. Even when there was a funny part, or they accidentally knocked something over (one actor, as I noticed from his sudden surprised look, did) yet they carried on without a second’s notice. I found this a very strong point. Finally, they were all very expressive. This made their performances much more believable and emotionally appealing. I especially loved Ren, because of how he always slouched which gave me the idea of a cool, relaxed, gangster-style guy, thus adding onto his character’s background of being from Chicago. Same going with Ariel; she always skipped around, giving me the idea of freedom, and the way how whenever she protested, her whole body would react to this; she wouldn’t stay slouching, as though it didn’t matter, but would either go rigid from being annoyed, or similar to her way of acting free by swooping her arms open, and standing up straight. This was my favourite memory.
My future goal for Drama would be to keep still during tableaus and to have a more fine-tuned physical expression. I find that many of my physical expressions are similar, and looks a lot like what I would do. I would prefer them to be more as to what the character would do.