Thursday, January 13, 2011

Stagecraft class homework, week #1

Technically speaking, this is the homework for my Stagecraft for Soloists class (Saturdays from 2:30 to 3:45PM at World in Motion! And there's still space to join us, FYI!), but ya'll other people can play along with us at home. Join us in the comments if'n you like.

The goal for this assignment is to practice thoughtful, non-judgmental critique and to start thinking about some of the issues we will be exploring in the upcoming class session. If you are attending class, please come to the first class prepared to discuss your reaction to this assignment.

Before we get into the critique itself, let's talk guidelines.

We are looking for qualitative reactions to the source material that are free of value judgments. So, when you're approaching your critique, think about framing statements thusly:

(XYZ- your feeling or perception)
(ABC- a tangible element of the performance)

-I noticed XYZ about this dance.
-ABC stood out the most to me.
-When the dancer(s) did ABC it conveyed XYZ to me.
-ABC about the costuming/lighting/makeup/etcetera conveyed XYZ to me.
-This dance made me feel XYZ.
-I think that the goal of the dancer(s) was XYZ.
-I was distracted by ABC.
-I would have liked to see more (or less) ABC.

Here are some types of statements we're trying to avoid.

-I liked (or) didn't like ABC.
-This dance was too XYZ for me.
-This dance wasn't XYZ enough for me.

And finally

-Bellydancers shouldn't do ABC.

We are trying to really engage with the material in an intelligent way here, all right? Be serious, not snarky!
Got it? Good!

Your assignment:
Compare the following two drum solos using the above parameters. What affects your perception of each? What do they have in common? Most importantly, what can you learn as a performer from your reaction to each of these videos?

Video 1

Video 2


  1. not that this is helpful, BUT OMFG I just typed out an entire really long detailed response and then the page got refreshed and it disappeared QQ