Check out this Two Person scene performed by Shaheen Ali and Christopher May. In it the performers weave patterns of emotional behavior to link characters, relationships and environment in a sustainable scene. Enjoy!
Your scene partner initiates, telling you, “You’re terrible.” Does that make you sad? Does that make you angry?
What if your scene partner is just “some stupid kid”? Maybe he says, “You’re terrible” and you just laugh; “Yeah, okay, I’m terrible.”
Making a choice about a relationship and relative status can help inform reactions and enable active emotions that elevate scenes. Here’s an exercise to help. Continue reading
Emotional Character Development: We don’t need it “all figured out” the moment we step on stage. Make one choice and then build other choices on top of that choice.
We can start with emotion and build the details of our character around that. Or, we can start with a detail and build an emotional character from there.
CHARACTER WALK – students walk around the space as themselves. Teacher gives prompts for them to make choices from (see Progression below). Teacher asks additional questions to flesh out the characters. Teacher has students reset, returning to walk around the space as themselves again. And repeat.
• Have players change elements of their personal walk to see how it affects the way they feel
• Change your rate – speed up, slow down
• Change your size – is your walk big or small?
• Walk with a different body part forward
• Change your spine
• Be an animal
• Walk like someone you know
• Ask the class to try on a different:
• Desire (I want…)
• Perspective (I like…, I hate…)
• Ask questions to flesh out the character. Basically “if this, then what”; for example, how do you feel about the action you’re doing, or how does that desire affect your walk?
• Ask students to speak in their character’s voice – calling out students individually to contribute
• Tell students to acknowledge each other’s presence to discover their ‘status’
• Don’t let starting a scene be intimating – all you need to start is one choice