Ch.4 (7th Ed) Ch. 3 (8th Ed) -- Creating the Blueprint
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Ch.4 (7th Ed) Ch. 3 (8th Ed) -- Creating the Blueprint

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Ch.4 (7th Ed) Ch. 3 (8th Ed) -- Creating the Blueprint Presentation Transcript

  • 1. Chapter 3
  • 2. 2 A scene from Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night at the Royal Shakespeare Company © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 3.  Theatre productions typically begin with the script, or text  Provides a plan for a production 3© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 4.  Selecting the specific Subject of the play  Determine Focus and Emphasis  Establish Purpose  Develop Dramatic Structure  Creating Dramatic Characters  Establish Point of View (will discuss in next chapter) 4© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 5.  Selecting the specific subject of the play  The subject matter for drama is always human beings  Determine what aspect of human existence to write about 5 Luis Valdez (center) author of Zoot Suit, with Edward James Olmos and his brother and musician Daniel Valdez. Play is about racial violence in LA in 1943 © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 6.  Determining focus  Decide who and what to focus on  How to interpret the characters and events 6 Playwright, David Mamet © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 7.  Establishing purpose  Purpose may be: ▪ Casual or unconscious, or ▪ Conscious and deliberate 7© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 8.  Establishing purpose continued  Different purposes: ▪ To entertain ▪ To probe the human condition ▪ To provide an escape ▪ To impart information (to teach) 8© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 9.  Developing dramatic structure  Every work of art has some type of structure ▪ When does the play begin? ▪ How are the scenes put together? ▪ How does the action unfold? ▪ What is the high point of action? ▪ What is the conflict and tension?  The structure of a play is analogous to that of a building © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 9
  • 10.  Essentials of Dramatic Structure  The story must be turned into a plot  The plot involves action  The plot includes conflict  There are strongly opposed forces  A reasonable balance is struck between the opposed forces 10© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 11.  Story must be turned into a plot  Story = full account of an event or series of events, usually in chronological order  Plot = selection and arrangement of scenes from a story 11© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 12.  Plot involves action  Action = the central, unifying conflict and movement through the drama ▪ According to Greek philosopher, Aristotle, action is a sequence of events linked by cause and effect, with a beginning, middle and end. 12© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 13. Conflict –  tension between two or more characters that leads to crisis or a climax;  a fundamental struggle or imbalance underlying a play.  Collision or opposition of persons or forces in a drama that give rise to dramatic action 13© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 14.  There are strongly opposed forces  Closely related to conflict  Powerful adversaries for each other and each character determined to achieve their goals A reasonable balance is struck between the opposed forces  Must be equal or closely matched 14© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 15.  Sequence in Dramatic Structure  Begin with the opening scene ▪ Starts the action and sets the tone and style ▪ Tells whether we are going to see a serious or a comic play and whether the play will deal with affairs of everyday life or with fantasy  Obstacles and complications block a character’s path  Crises and Climaxes © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 15
  • 16.  Obstacles and complications ▪ Obstacles - that which delays or prevents the achieving of a goal by a character; an obstacle creates complications and conflict ▪ Types of obstacles: ▪ Self ▪ Other People (always strongest) ▪ Nature ▪ Circumstance ▪ Complications – introduction of a new force that creates a new balance of power and entails a delay in reaching the climax © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 16
  • 17.  Crises and Climax  As a result of conflicts, obstacles and complications, dramatic characters become involved in a series of crises.  Crises – a point within a play where the action reaches an important confrontation or takes a critical turn. © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 17
  • 18.  Crises and Climax  In the tradition of a well-made play, a drama includes a series of crises that lead to the final crisis, known as the climax  Climax – Often defined as the high point in the action or the final and most significant crisis in the action – limited results – win or lose (not always so clear cut) © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved. 18
  • 19.  Climactic Plot Construction (or Intensive)  Dramatic structure in which there are few scenes, a short time passes, there are few locations and the action begins chronologically close to the climax  Episodic Plot Construction (or Extensive)  Dramatic structure in which there are many scenes, takes place over a long period of time, in a number of locations, usually with subplots 19© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 20.  Climactic Plot Construction  First used in 5th century B.C.E. Greece  Also called intensive  The Plot Begins Late in the Story  Scenes, Locales, and Characters Are Restricted  Construction Is Tight 20© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 21.  The Plot Begins Late in the Story – toward the very end or near climax ▪ Because the plot deals with a culmination of events, climactic form is sometimes called “crises drama” or “drama of catastrophe” 21© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 22. Because so much happens before the play begins, details about past must be provided during course of the play. This is called: Exposition – imparting of information necessary for an understanding of the story but not covered by the action on stage. 22© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 23.  Scenes, Locales and Characters are Restricted ▪ Limited Scenes – limited number of long scenes or perhaps only one act, or three acts with each act being one long scene. ▪ Covers a short amount of time, perhaps a few hours or at most a few days ▪ Limited Locations – one room or one house ▪ Limited Characters – usually 4 or 5 main characters 23© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 24.  Construction is Tight ▪ Events are ordered in an orderly compact way with no loose ends. Plot is linear and moves in a single line ▪ A chain linked by cause and effect ▪ Aim of climactic structure is to make events so inevitable that there is no escape, at least not until the last moment when deus ex machina may intervene 24© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 25. Deus ex machina – Literally, “god from a machine,” a resolution device in classic Greek drama; hence, intervention of supernatural force, usually at the last moment, to save the action from its logical conclusion. In modern drama, an arbitrary and coincidental solution. 25© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 26.  Episodic Plot Construction ▪ Emerged during the Renaissance in England and in Spain ▪ Plot begins early in the story and moves through a series of episodes ▪ Longer period of time - weeks, months even years. ▪ Many short, fragmented scenes; sometimes alternates long and short 26© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 27.  Episodic Plot Construction Continued  People, Places, and Events Proliferate  There May Be a Parallel Plot or a Subplot ▪ Subplot – secondary plot that reinforces or runs parallel to the major plot in an episodic play 27© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 28.  Episodic Plot Construction Continued  Contrast and Juxtaposition Are Used ▪ Public scenes alternate with private; long scenes alternate with short scenes; dramatic scenes alternate with comedic ones  The Overall Effect Is Cumulative  Combinations of Climactic and Episodic 28© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 29.  Other Forms of Dramatic Structure  Ritual as Structure ▪ Ritual – specifically ordered ceremonial event, often religious; some repetition or reenactment of an event or transaction that has special meaning  Patterns as Structure  Cyclical Structure  Serial Structure 29© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 30.  Other Forms of Dramatic Structure continued  Avant-Garde and Experimental Structures ▪ Interest in ritual and ceremony ▪ Emphasis on nonverbal theatre ▪ Reliance on improvisation ▪ Stress on the physical environment of theatre ▪ Stress on each audience member’s developing his or her own interpretation of the work being presented  Segments and Tableaux as Structure 30© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 31. 31 Images from Robert Wilson productions © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 32. 32 Richard Foreman’s “Deep Trance Behavior in Potatoland” © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 33.  Types of Dramatic Characters  Extraordinary Characters ▪ Heroes and heroines ▪ Larger than life ▪ Historically, have been kings, queens, generals, members of nobility ▪ Present some form of extreme of human behavior 33© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 34. 34 King Lear at Shakespeare’s Globe Theater in London © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 35.  Types of Dramatic Characters continued  Representative or Quintessential Characters ▪ Three-dimensional, highly individual, ordinary ▪ Embody the characteristics of an entire group  Stock Characters ▪ Symbolize a particular type of person to the exclusion of virtually everyone else ▪ Appear particularly in comedy and melodrama ▪ Famous examples of stock characters are those in Commedia dell’arte 35© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 36.  Commedia dell’arte – Form of comic theater, originating in 16th century Italy, in which dialogue was improvised around a loose scenario calling for a set of stock characters. Wore masks and often same costumes.  Capitano – Bragging soldier  Dottore – Pompous character  Pantalone – Elderly merchant  Harlequin –Servant – most popular – cunning and stupid – at heart of every plot complication 36© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 37. 37 Commedia dell’arte © 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 38.  Types of Dramatic Characters continued  Characters with a Dominant Trait ▪ One aspect of this character dominates, making for an unbalanced, and often comic, personality  Minor Characters ▪ Play a small part in overall action ▪ Appear briefly and serve to further the story or to support more important characters 38© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 39.  Types of Dramatic Characters continued  Narrator or Chorus ▪ Generally, a narrator speaks directly to the audience ▪ Comments on the action ▪ Greek drama used a chorus that commented, in song and dance, on the action  Nonhuman Characters ▪ Often animals that are supposed to draw parallels with the human experience 39© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
  • 40.  Juxtaposition of Characters  Protagonist: leading character, chief or outstanding figure in the action  Antagonist: character who opposes the protagonist  Foils or counterparts to the main characters 40© 2013 The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All Rights Reserved.