In the last few weeks of the IB course at my school I thought it would be a good idea to work with the director’s notebook for next year. So, this is what we did:
Stage 1 – research
- I chose a play that could be divided into many sections so that 2 moments could be selected (‘Love and Information’ by Caryl Churchill).
- Read the entire play aloud as a class
- As a group researched the context of the playwright – shared our research and sources on google docs
- Shared with our partner mentor what our personal context was – then shared a group
- We then went on to research the play a little more, as a group, and looked at the theoretical context
- I then ran a short workshop on Artaud and Brecht
- Students carried out research on the theorists and shared their findings as a group and discussed how aspects of the practices could be applied in performance
Stage 2 – practical exploration
For class the students chose the 2 sections they wanted to work on in performance and prepared for their directorial with actors. In the process they needed to cover (image source):
- Their own personal context and reason for choosing this scene
- Their vision for the scene
- Their intended impact on the audience
- How they viewed movement and staging in the scene
- Any set, props, costume, colours, lights etc they visualised
- Outline of the characters: relationships, intentions, characteristics
- Do the movement with the actors
- Show to the rest of the class for feedback – whether intended impact was achieved
Stage 3 – practical work and development
We then worked on another scene following the same process, but also included the following:
- What did you need to work on to improve the first scene?
- What do you need to change to achieve intended impact?
- Show the scene again. What else have you achieved?
- Work on second scene.
- Again, why did you choose this? What do you want? What did the playwright intend and how are you building on this?
Students then created their director’s notebook based on their research, shared notes, practical exploration, directorial notes and designs.
These were assessed using the IB Theatre Guide assessment criteria.