A fully realized theatrical production of a play is a lengthy process which engages numerous artists of many disciplines in an extraordinary collaborative effort to help create "the world of the play" and to help bring to life the characters, along with the actors. The course aims to serve as a foundation for young theater artists by offering insight into how thorough script analysis, the examination of given circumstances and character analysis can be translated into visual and audible elements of the mise-en-scène. In addition, the course will help students develop a universal vocabulary of theater and design terminology and an understanding of theatrical venues and equipment. It also enables first-year students to successfully engage in being a valued member of a production team in any capacity. Prerequisite: DRAM 111 is recommended and permission of instructor. Offered every spring.
This course presents a historical study of Western theater from its origins to the present time. Students will examine the evolution of the physical theater structure and production elements of each period, as well as the relationship between each style and its historical context. Work will include lectures, readings, projects and discussion. Required for drama majors. Prerequisite: sophomore standing. Offered every year.
Through the rehearsal and performance of various scenes, students will explore the nature of the actor's contribution to the theater. Work will include performance exercises, readings and written assignments. Prerequisite: DRAM 111. Offered every year.
Working from varied scripts, students will move from a study of the visual choices implicit in the text to the process of designing scenery. This course places an emphasis on collaboration and includes written assignments, drafting, sketching and model building. Prerequisite: DRAM 111. Generally offered every year.
The face is the actor's most important tool to communicate the character's intent. This course teaches how the art and craft of theatrical makeup can be used to project the students' facial features on stage and film and how to visualize the determinants of a character's physical appearance. In addition to the assimilation and projection of the character in terms of age, environment, and health, the course also explores the psychological support makeup can give the actor. Students will analyze the makeup design of characters in 5 to 6 plays. Students will apply makeup to themselves during laboratory exercises and for project adjudication. Students are evaluated on how well they have prepared to do a daily exercise. Students are evaluated on their progress and improvement at executing a technique once they have practiced it and received critical feedback. Students will also evaluate their own and each other's designs and makeup applications. Permission of instructor is required.
This course studies the major theatrical movements of the first half of the 20th century, emphasizing plays as they were performed in the theater of the time. Work will include readings, discussions, written assignments, projects and lectures. Prerequisite: sophomore standing. Generally offered every third year.
Students will be given weekly exercises exploring dialogue, monologue, exposition, autobiography, historical research and process/physical life. The class discusses the resulting short plays in a group critique, after which they are rewritten. In the first semester, students will finish with a collection of short plays that can later be developed into longer works. Students will keep a writer's notebook, do in-class exercises, and read a variety of plays relevant to their weekly assignments, including plays by Harold Pinter, John Guare, Martin McDonagh, Annie Baker, Caryl Churchill and Tarell Alvin McCraney. This course is equivalent to DRAM 231Y and students can not take both courses. Prerequisite: DRAM 111.
This course continues an investigation, from the director's point of view, of the creation of live theater from dramatic texts. Students will direct scenes and excerpts from a broad range of texts including contemporary realist and non-realist plays, verse plays, and new works. We will emphasize the role of the director in collaboration with actors as well as other key relationships such as those with designers and playwrights. Work will include directed projects, written assignments and reading. Prerequisite: DRAM 261. Generally offered every other year.
Designed to unleash the imaginative and generative power of the body and voice, this course is a practical exploration of the physical instrument as an entry-point into theatre-making. Students will explore, both practically and theoretically, several methodologies including Grotowski and the Viewpoints and will apply these techniques towards devising original pieces as well as traditional scene study and text work. Through rigorous studio practice students will learn to access a broader spectrum of expression as performers and will develop their own physical and vocal practice. Permission of instructor required.