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Bryan · Visual and Performing Arts · Drama - DRAM

Acting I
DRAM-1351

  • Fall 2021
  • Section 300 CRN-17052
  • 3 Credits
  • 08/30/2021 to 12/16/2021
  • Modified 11/09/2021

Meeting Times

Theatre Studio in Student Center

  • Monday, Wednesday, 12:00 PM to 1:15 PM, F125 - Studio Student Center

Exterior door for class is near the Bus pick-up/drop-off behind the Student Center.

Please remove your shoes and bags to the shelves provided right of the double doors of F125 Studio upon entrance of class, likewise, always bring in a notebook and pen for taking notes into class.

No phones in pockets (please leave on mute and not vibrating on the shelves or in your bags).

I encourage you to wear masks upon entering the space, as well as sanitize your hands.  

Contact Information

Instructor: Mr. Greg Wise

Office Hours

  • MW: 1:45PM - 2:45PM; TR: 1:45PM - 3:45PM or by appointment.
  • H186

You can reach me during office hours in a number of ways:

1.)  E-mail inside E-campus D2L: [email protected]

2.)  Instant messaging in D2L

3.). Via ZOOM videoconferencing links below.

4.)  By appointment via ZOOM.  (schedule with Prof for specific time if outside of posted office hours). 

5.) In-person on-campus in Room H186 during posted office hours on Tuesdays & Wednesdays.  Please notify me ahead of time, if you could, when I can expect you.

Simply click on the link for the respective day you wish to join me in ZOOM OFFICE HOURS and input the Passcode indicated:

Fall 2021 Office Hours for Greg Wise M/W from 1:45pm - 2:45pm:

https://blinn-edu.zoom.us/j/86784364357?pwd=WjhGb3lxS0dCb0wxQWE2aUVYZCt2QT09

Meeting ID: 867 8436 4357
Passcode: 488090

Fall 2021 Office Hours for Greg Wise T/R from 1:45pm - 3:45pm:

https://blinn-edu.zoom.us/j/85355471121?pwd=dmhoMWpVVk5Zcmo3RUMwVEIrLzIxZz09

Meeting ID: 853 5547 1121
Passcode: 844823

Description

An introduction to the fundamental principles and tools of acting as used in auditions,rehearsals, and performances. This may include ensemble performing, character and script analysis, and basic theater terminology. This exploration will emphasize the development of the actor’s instrument: voice, body, and imagination

Three class hours. Credit: Three semester hours.

Requisites

Prerequisites:

Corequisites:

Core Curriculum Statement

This course is not a core curriculum course.

Outcomes

1.  Analyze scripts from the viewpoint of the actor.

2.  Analyze, develop, and perform a character.

3.  Demonstrate effective and safe use of the voice and body.

4.  Define and discuss terms and concepts using the vocabulary of theater.

5.  Perform at an appropriately skilled level in ensemble building exercises, scenes and final projects, which may include participation in plays.

Materials

(Bryan Campus) There are two textbooks required for this course. 

Bruder, Melissa, et al.  THE PRACTICAL HANDBOOK FOR THE ACTOR. New York: Vintage Books. ISBN: 0394744128 

$T2eC16hHJHQE9nzEzv2CBR%28%21SLgH%21Q%7E

Williams, Tennessee. A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE.  New York: New Directions Books.  ISBN:  0811216020

 

Additionally, you need to provide me with:

1 quality photo printed headshot and resume. (estimated cost $5 - $10)

Lastly,

Attend on-Campus Theatre Events (for attendance credit):

Blinn Theatre Alumni: Now & Then, October 28 & 29, 2021, Student Center Theatre at 7PM.

The Second Shepherd's Play: December 1 & 2, 2021 at 7pm, Blinn Student Center Theatre; December 3rd at 6:30pm & 7:30pm on the Front Steps of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Downtown Bryan

Watch one Digital Theatre Event (for Actor Critique): https://libguides.blinn.edu/az.php?a=d

Log-in is free for Blinn students via the A to Z Database/Digital Theatre Plus.

Select from the following plays

Buried Child by Sam Shepard (1h 50m) - American Drama, 1978, Broadway HD

Lovesong by Abi Morgan (1h 35m) - British Drama/Movement, 2011, Lyric Hammersmith

Pipeline by Dominique Morriseau (1h 27m) - American Drama, 2019, Lincoln Center Theatre

Red by John Logan (1h 34m) - American Drama, 2009, Wyndham's Theatre 

 

  • Availability: Bookstore & online

Course Requirements

Students will present two dramatic scenes to the class in a professional manner.

Students will be expected to complete 70% mastery on at least two major exams.

Students will be graded on class participation.

Students will be expected to attend at least one dramatic production during the semester and will submit a written evaluation detailing the experience.

Evaluation

Criteria

Types of evaluations and related weights
Type Weight Topic Notes
Scenework 40% 400 pts

Students will present two (each worth 200 points) prepared and rehearsed scenes with partner(s). 

Monologue and Auditions 20% 200 pts

Students will prepare monologues during a formal in-class Audition.

Class Participation & Assignments Online 10% 100 pts

Students will participate during practice of Presence, vocal and physical warm-ups, class exercises and assigned Improvisations. 

Online Quizzes & Assignments 10% 100 pts

Online assignments including textbook, play reading quizzes.

Performance Credits 10% 100 pts

Students will be expected to attend 2 Theatre productions on-campus and watch 1 Digital Streaming Production on Digital Theatre Plus

On-campus:

Blinn Theatre Alumni: Now & Then, Oct 28 & 29, 2021 at 7pm, Student Center Theatre (50 pts)

The Second Shepard's Play by Anonymous, Dec 1 & 2, 2021 at 7pm, Student Center Theatre and Dec 3, 2021 at 6:30pm & 7:30pm, St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Downtown Bryan (50 pts)

See syllabi for list of approved plays in Digital Theatre Plus (tied into 1st Actor Critique GRADE). 

Written Critiques 10% 100 pts

Students will write two written critiques (Each worth 50 points) over an actors performance in theatre.

Total 100% 1000 pts

Breakdown

900 - 1000 = A

800 - 899 = B

700 - 799 = C

600 - 699 = D

599 & below = F

 

Class participation                                       = 100 points

Online Quizzes & Assignments                   = 100 points

Performance credit (2 plays)                       = 100 points

First Scene                                                   = 200 points

Monologues/Audition                                 = 200 points

Final Scene                                                   = 200 points

2 Critiques (50 points each)                        = 100 points

_____________________________________________

TOTAL                                                         = 1000 points

Extra credit for additional performances attended (25 points, 2 max)

working ushering/stage crew for production: (10 - 50 points)

Blinn College Policies

All policies, guidelines, and procedures in the Blinn College CatalogBlinn College Board Policies, and the Blinn College Administrative Regulations are applicable to this course.

Specific information on civility, attendance, add/drop, scholastic integrity, students with disabilities, final grade appeal, alternative retailers, campus carry and proctoring arrangements and cost.

Notice of any action taken under these protocol and procedures, by Blinn College or its employees, may be delivered by hand, through the U.S. Postal Service, or electronically to the student’s Blinn Buc e-mail account. Notice shall be deemed received upon actual receipt, on deposit in the U.S. Mail, or upon entering the information processing system used by Blinn College for Blinn Buc e-mail accounts, whichever first occurs.

Information about the changes Blinn has made to the Fall semester: Back with Blinn.

Course Policies

 NO CELLULAR DEVICES OUT OR IN YOUR POCKETS DURING CLASS

1.)  Presence/Warm-ups/Class Exercises/Improvisations – In-class, practicing what we'll come to now as "Presence" (living in 2nd Circle--a state of presence) both as an actor and human being.  Followed by group physical & vocal warm-ups and exercises that get our instrument (the body, voice & mind) in "shape" to prepare us to work.  These are a vital portion of this course and your willingness to participate is crucial and counted at 10% of your grade (100 points). Our regiment will take us through practicing Presence (Rodenburg), voice work (Linklater, Lessac, Berry, & Rodenburg), movement (Laban, Alexander, Yoga. etc.) and imagination (improvisation, Spolin, Second City, etc.).

2.)  Scene analysis – This is probably the most underestimated and under-utilized tool of the actor. As we learn to analyze scenes, you will be required to use this technique and turn in assignments accordingly. There are a hundred different answers to interpreting the intentions of the playwright first and the interpretation of the character by the individual actor second.  You will learn a preferred method of "scoring" your scripts and demarcating them to share your analytical process. 

3.) 2 Written Performance Critiques - You will be required to write two critiques assessing a specific actor's creation of character onstage.

a.) Your FIRST Actor Critique must be from Digital Theatre Plus (please consult online module for which specific plays--you cannot just choose randomly) and write ONE two-page analysis (1st Due Mon, Nov 15th) on the performance of one particular actor:

Please include the following:

a.) Full Name of the actor and their character character name.

b.) The full title of the play, name of the playwright and where you saw this performed.  Production credits are in the Creative Team credits in Digital Thetare.

c.) Discuss respectively with as much specific description as possible:

        --their characterization choices (physical, vocal);

        --use of externals (specific costuming, hair & make-up choices;

        --use of modifications (accents, physical transformation, states);

        --use of actions (pinpoint and illustrate as example specific scenes where their choices of actions seemed clearest and effective);

        -- use of props and interaction with their environment;

         --memorization, voice/handle of language, movement;

         --ability to work with other cast members.

d.) Use MLA formatting for your Paper: https://www.blinn.edu/writing-centers/pdfs/MLA-Formatting.pdf

d.) Remember: You are observing and critiquing the performance and the craft of acting. Nowhere in this paper should there be a retelling of the plot or lambasting of the particular performer. 

e.) Your SECOND Critique (2nd Due Mon, Dec 6th) will be of one particular actor’s in your collegiate production on-campus OR seen professional production attended (must get approval of that from professor).  i.e. no musicals, no community playhouse performances, etc. You will include the same criteria listed above for the first critique.

4.)  1st Scene - You will present a prepared scene in-class assigned and partnered by the instructor. This scene will be worked in-class, through independent rehearsals outside of class and (if co-ordinated) outside coachings with the instructor and graded according to the following criteria: character analysis, memorization, clear action & objective, voice, movement, costume (from yours, your friends, parents, Goodwill, etc), use of props/environment, and rehearsal. You must commit to rehearsing the scene outside of class time— your inability to do so is a direct reflection on your work. The scene is to be 5 – 10 minutes in length. A written “scene analysis worksheet” entailing character analysis and evaluation of you and your scene partner’s process will be due on the showing date of your scene in-class in front of your peers.

5.) Monologues/Audition – 2 contrasting monologues of your choosing and instructors approval will be required within the context of an Audition using the 9 steps and guidelines provided by the Instructor. This monologue will receive work time in-class and in through individual coachings outside of class the week of NOV 15th as well as performance in class and should be treated as an audition, complete with entrance, slate, transitions, pieces, thank you and exit. You will need nice clothes from your wardrobe for this assignment. A typed theatrical resume and quality printed photo (headshot) of you will be due on the showing date of your Audition in-class.

6.) FINAL Scene - A final scene selected and partnered by the instructor demonstrating all that we have covered in this course. The scene must be a minimum of 8 minutes in length. This also includes written “scene analysis worksheet”, coachings, rehearsals, etc. like the initial rounds. All written work will be due upon the presentation of your scene.

7.) Out-of-Class Coachings - These are critical times where you (and your partner(s)) will work outside or within regularly scheduled class period for acting coachings with the instructor. You are expected to come prepared with analysis, memorization, appropriate props and costumes needed to develop your character and scene.

8.) Independent Rehearsals outside of Class.These are scheduled with your scene partner, and are expected to arrive prepared and on-time.  Respectful of one another, establishing clear comfort working zones and communication with each other.  Result in abuse of this could result in Incivility and infraction of Title IX and dealt with accordingly not only by the Instructor but the College Institution. 

9.) Performance Credits: Production credits require you to see 3 shows: 2 on-campus Blinn productions, 1 off-campus professional production (not a musical).  Must present your Blinn I.D. before & after the show for credit: (50 pts [1/2 a letter grade] each).

Blinn Theatre Alumni: Now & Then: Oct 28 & 29, 2021 at 7PM in Student Center Theatre

The Second Shepards's Play: Dec 1 & 2, 2021 at 7PM in Student Center Theatre; Dec 3, 2021 at 6:30PM & 7:30PM on The Front Steps of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Downtown Bryan

Digital Theatre Plus (pre-selected production by your Instructor) 

Dress : Wear comfortable, appropriate and non-confining clothes that you can move in daily to class. You may be required to remove your shoes, as well as sit or squat on the floor for certain in class exercises.

If you have any mobility issues, please consult with the Professor and bring/so modifications as needed. 

Memorization: All Scene 1 & 2 performances, plus, the Audition/Monologue unit assignments will be memorized.

Decorum: This work requires a trusting and trustworthy, collaborative atmosphere in the classroom. You will be expected to conduct yourself in a manner that shows respect for yourself, all others, and our common process at all times. Persons unable to accomplish this will be asked to leave and/or approached with violation of Incivility Clause at Blinn College.  It is also important to note that in a class of this kind, where art is involved, one's moral makeup must be left at the door. What this means is that there may be adult content and language in some of the literature we decide to use and it is not for you to decide that it is inappropriate for this course because of your moral opinion. If you think this will be a problem you should notify the professor immediately.

Schedule

                      Syllabus—DRAM 1351 (300) Acting I—FALL 2021


DATE            TOPIC/ASSIGNMENTS/DUE DATES                                         HOURS/TOTAL HRS

______________________________________________________________________________________________

M Aug 30     Introductions/review syllabus                                                            (1.5 Hrs)

W Sept 1       Presence.  Physical & vocal warm-ups                                             (1.5 Hrs)

                    **OPEN AUDITIONS: Wednesday, Sept 1, Student Center Theatre 6PM - 9PM  

                    (Audition sign-ups outside of H186)

                     CALLBACK AUDITIONS: Thursday, Sept 2, 6PM - 9PM

_____________________________________________________________________________ 3

M  Sept  6      Labor Day Holiday - no class                                                              (1.5 Hrs)

*W  Sept 8    READ Practical Handbook pgs ix - 12, & complete Quiz #1 online 

                       Presence. Warm-ups exercises & Improvisations

                       In-class Discussion of Reading & Quiz due for today.

                       Explanation of Inventory/Essence Assignment.                               (1.5 Hrs)

_____________________________________________________________________________6

*M  Sept 13    READ Practical Handbook pgs 13 -39, & complete Quiz #2 online

                      *Inventory Due in Dropbox.

                       Presence. Warm-up exercises & Improvisations.

                       In-class Discussion of Reading & Quiz due for today.                    (1.5 Hrs)       

*W  Sept 15   READ Practical Handbook, pgs 40 - 54, & complete Quiz #3 online

                        Presence. Warm-up Exercises & Improvisations.

                        Discussion of Reading & Quiz due today in class.                        (1.5 Hrs)

 _____________________________________________________________________________________________9

*M  Sept 20   READ Practical Handbook, pgs 55- 58, & complete Quiz #4 online

                        Presence. Warm-ups and Exercises

                      Discussion of Reading & Quiz due for today.                                   (1.5 Hrs)

*W  Sept 22  READ entire play A Streetcar Named Desire and complete online Quiz

                       Presence. Warm-up Exercises & Improvisation

                       Discussion of characterization in A Streetcar Named Desire      

How to Work on Character & Scene Analysis for Streetcar scene 1 in class and written portion due in Dropbox on Monday, 09/27/21.                                                        (1.5 Hrs)

_____________________________________________________________________________12

*M  Sept 27  Scene Analysis for Streetcar Scene 1 due in Dropbox

                   READ Practical Handbook, pgs. 59-66, Ch 6 & 7, & complete Quiz #5 online.

                       Presence. Warm-up Exercises & Improvisations.

                       Discussion of Reading, Quiz & Streetcar Scene 1 Analysis.   

How to Work on Character & Scene Analysis for Streetcar scene 10in class and written portion due in Dropbox on Wednesday, 09/29/21.                                                  (1.5 Hrs)

*W  Sept 29  Scene Analysis for Streetcar Scene 10 due in Dropbox

                 READ Practical Handbook, pgs 69 - 86, Ch 8 – 12 & complete Quiz #6 online 

                      Presence. Warm-up Exercises & Improvisations.

                      Discussion of Reading, Quiz & Streetcar Scene 10 Analysis.             (1.5 Hrs)

_____________________________________________________________________________15

M  Oct 4    NO CLASS, but work on OPEN SCENES indepently.                                (1.5 Hrs)

W  Oct 6    *Open Scenes & preparing for your scenes

                    Presence. Warm-ups & Improvs.

                                                                                                                                     (1.5 Hrs)

_____________________________________________________________________________18

M  Oct 11      Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises, Present short 1-minute scenes in-class.

                       Scene #1 Assignments in class with your partner(s).                             (1.5 Hrs)

W  Oct 13      Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises, Improvisations.

                      In-class coachings of Scene #1 in class with Instructor.                                                                                                                                                                                       (1.5 Hrs)

_____________________________________________________________________________21

M  Oct 18      Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises, Improvisations.

                      In-class coachings of Scene #1 in class with Instructor.                   (1.5 Hrs)

W  Oct 20      Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises, Improvisations.

                      Work Scene #1 in class (1.5 Hours)

 

_____________________________________________________________________________24

*M   Oct 25.   Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises.

                      Present Scene #1 in class, scene worksheets due in Dropbox.  (1.5 Hrs)

*W   Oct 27    Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises, Improvisations.

                       Introductions of 9 elements of an Auditions & Monologue Choice Criteria.

                                                                                                                                     (1.5 Hrs)

**REQUIRED ATTENDANCE (must attend 1 night): Blinn Theatre Alumni: Now & Then Oct 28 & 29, 2021 at 7pm in Student Center Theatre.  _____________________________________________________________________________27

M  Nov 1        Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises, Improvisations.

                      Practicing Slate in-class, reviewing the 9 Auditions Steps.                (1.5 Hrs)

W  Nov 3        Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises, Improvisations.

                                                                               

                       Begin Memorization of 1st Monologue due 11/10/21.                           (1.5 Hrs)

 _____________________________________________________________________________30

*M   Nov  8    Headshots taken in-class: Dress appropriately, hair/make-up.    (1.5 Hrs)

W  Nov 10    Meet in LIBRARY (due to Court of Appeals) - Have 2 comedic & 2 dramatic monologues for approval, bring hard copies of each to LIBRARY study room for Greg to approve and begin memorizing for next week's coaching.                                                         (1.5 Hrs)

_____________________________________________________________________________33

  • NO REGULARLY SCHEDULED CLASS THIS WEEK. 
  • EACH STUDENT MUST SIGN UP FOR A ONE-HOUR COACHING. 
  • BOTH MONOLOGUES MEMORIZED, A DRAFT OF YOUR RESUME BROUGHT IN HAND TO THE COACHING.  
  • YOU WILL SIGN-UP FOR YOUR INDIVIDUAL TIME.  NO-SHOWS: FAILURE TO SHOW UP FOR YOUR APPOINTED TIME WILL RESULT IN A ZERO AND INELIGIBILITY TO PRESENT AUDITION/MONOLOGUE.  YOU WILL NOT BE ABLE TO RESCHEDULE ONCE MISSED. 

*M   Nov 15    1st Theatre Actor Critique (over Digital Theatre Plus Actor of choice from approved plays) Due in the Dropbox.

                      Monologue/Auditions: One-hour coaching.                                           (1.5 Hrs)

W  Nov 17     Monologue/Auditions: One-hour coaching.                                           (1.5 Hrs)

_____________________________________________________________________________36

*M  Nov 22   Present Monologue/Auditions in-class

                        Headshot & resume due in the Dropbox. 

W  Nov 24     HOLIDAY -Thanksgiving Break (1.5 Hours)

_____________________________________________________________________________39

M Nov 29.     Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises, Improvisations. 

                      Final scene – in-class time to work with your partner(s).                     (1.5 Hrs)

W Dec 1        Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises, Improvisations. 

                      Final scene – in-class time to work with your partner(s).                     (1.5 Hrs)

**Attend one performance of The Second Shepard's Play: Dec 1 & 2, 2021 at 7PM in Student Center Theatre, Dec 3, 2021 at 6:30PM & 7:30PM on The Front Steps of St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Downtown Bryan.

 _____________________________________________________________________________42

*M  Dec 6    2nd Theatre Actor Critique (Live Actor in Performance) due in the Dropbox

                     Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises, Improvisations. 

                     Final scene--In-Class coaching with the Professor (must be memorized).                                                                                                                                                   (1.5 Hrs)

W  Dec 8      Presence. Warm-ups & Exercises, Improvisations. 

                     Final scene--In-Class coaching with the Professor (must be memorized).                                                                                                                                                    (1.5 Hrs)

_____________________________________________________________________________45

*M  Dec 13     12:45PM - 3:00PM --FINAL SCENE PRESENTATIONS in classroom.

                        Scene Analysis Worksheets due in the Dropbox.                                  (3 Hrs)

_______________________________________________________________________________

                                                                                                                      Total Contact Hours: 48

 

DATES TO NOTE:

Monday, August 30, 2021             - First day of Fall Classes

Tuesday, August 31, 2021             - Last Day to Register

Monday, September 6, 2021         - Labor Day Holiday - no classes

Wednesday, September 15, 2021  - 16 Week Day of Record

Monday, October 18, 2021            - Winter Mini-mester & Spring 2022 Registration Begins

Nov 24 - 28, 2021                          - Thanksgiving Holidays - no classes

Friday, December 3, 2021             - Last Day to Drop with a "Q"

Saturday, December 11, 2021       - Last Day of Classes

Monday, December 13, 2021        - Finals Schedule - Scene Presentations