Friday, October 09, 2009

AST Playshop

Some days are more frustrating than others. I get SO TIRED of asking / telling students to listen without interrupting, to put snacks and drinks away, and to follow the dress code. Seriously! And what's especially frustrating is that it's not like they're being defiant (up until it becomes an issue when I mention it - then I get attitude). For the most part they're not even really being rude - just inconsiderate and/or thoughtless. Like they go to save the practice yearbook page they've been working on for thirty minutes and realize they're not sure how and all of a sudden it's MRS KEYS MRS KEYS HOW DO I SAVE THIS? when I'm in the middle of helping someone else. They don't even realize how wrong they are when I stare at them as though they've got lobsters crawling out of their ears.

I need to get a ticket dispenser...

ANYWAY, that's mostly a tangent. Yesterday several of the actors from the New American Shakespeare Tavern (in Atlanta) came to our school and worked with my seniors on Macbeth.

I hope to have some photos to upload soon; more behind the cut for now.

They started by getting everyone into a circle... sorta... We did a little movement with "spirit fingers... JAZZ HANDS! ... spirit fingers... JAZZ HANDS!" and then the Wave, which got them making some noise as well.

Then they went around the circle and had each person say either "bloody," "bawdy," or "villain." They did this a couple of times, first just saying it, then encouraging the students to do something with their hands and facial expression. And THEN they said, "okay, if you said 'bloody,' go over in this group, 'bawdy' in that group, and 'villain' stay on stage." (I think.) Anyway, it was pretty cool that the students were counting off by three and didn't know! Mwahahaha!

Next, they practiced acting with Shakespearean insults. These weren't the mix-n-match kind; they were actually lines from plays. (We'll get to "what? You egg!" soon... hee hee! I wonder if they'll recognize it...)

Running short on time.

Ok, then each group practiced two condensed scenes, focusing on interpretation - not everybody had a speaking part, but we had interactive scenery! More on this later.

Finally, we wrapped it up and the groups performed their scenes in order. Much applause! There was a little time at the end for a short Q&A with the actors.

I'm going to ask the students to reflect on it in their Writer's Notebooks today.

Image thanks to


Rachel said...

That is AMAZING. Way jealous.

I would also like a ticket dispenser. You should patent one for classrooms, I think it'd be a hit.

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