Friday, May 24, 2019
Blue Remembered Hills Essay
The p share and backgroundSet in the West country (Devonshire/Cornwall) in 1943, the dramatist Dennis Potter explores the traumatic childhoods of 7 young children. primitively written for television in 1979, the defend follows seven 7 year sexagenarians through an real day of their lives. As the play takes place in current time the whole thing is naturalistic and there are no non naturalistic proficiencys such as flashbacks or former(a) theatrical devices to skip to disparate times. The play is raiment in a barn, a wood and a field on a summers afternoon. Over the two hr period the friends play and squabble, voxicularly victimizing a boy whom they call Donald Duck, the play climaxes when this character is left out of games and activities by his peers and therefore decides to play his suffer game a game of pyromaniaCharactersAs I said ear lie potr the play is on the whole naturalistic, however there is one significant exception the playwright Dennis Potter insisted that ad ult actors were cast to portray the children. He design that if children were used the listening would lose the true meaning of the write up within the sympathy that they would olfactory perception for the child actors.The BoysJohn Looks after Raymond, fair-minded, often challenges Peter.Peter Bully, really strong, is not very clever.Raymond Has a stutter, very gentle and sensitive, is dressed as a cowboy.Willie brilliant and he uses this to overcome Peters bullying, is easy goingThe GirlsAngela really bossy, pretty and very flirtatious for a seven year old, very self-centered.Audrey incessantly trying to be Angelas friend, very plain, overshadowed by Angela.The victimDonald Duck Boys put ont like him very much, girls allow him to play house with them. Very lonely as everyone taunts and bullies him. He is abused.Important hidden charactersWallace Wilson class bully, hear lots a bust him yet never actually see him.Donald Ducks mother Abuses him, plays part towards Donalds d epression and pyromania.Adult ActorsDennis Potter decided that for his play he wanted to cast adult actors to play the parts of the children, master(prenominal)ly because of the audiences reaction to the plot. He felt that the audience would lose the true meanings of the play, as they would sympathize with child actors. Potter took into consideration how child behavior differentiates when being watched by an audience, whereas adults would truthfully portray their emotions.My opinionIn my opinion I call back that Dennis Potters casting choice was a very bad decision. I see the play as more of a joke than a serious nibble of drama. The adult actors do not resemble children, but instead adults with mental difficulties, because of this I believe Potter has done exactly what he wanted to avoid and took the true meaning out of the play.Lesson 1In our first lesson we began by exploring playing children, from womb to 2 years old. We turned off the lights to focus on the themes of loneli ness and to focus on actually ontogeny in the mothers womb. I began in a tucked shape as foetus do we then turned the light on to represent the birth. From this tiptop we were babies and infants developing gradually from 0-2 yrs.Examples of body language awarenessFetus legato, in a tucked position.Newborn slight forepart of limbs- visual and audio only.3 months As above, slight movement of cutting edge- side to side to explore surroun cacophonygs visual and audio only.6-9 months As above, able to roll over slightly-visual audio and kinesthetic.12-18 months Able to wrap head alone and support self. Movement of all body parts now occurring visual, audio and kinesthetic.18-24 months crawling to explore surroundings kinesthetically Using objects to draw out selves up. It is at this age we felt that we would be capable of interacting with other actors, by both voice and body language. I and Connie chose to play typical childhood activities (clapping games and pull hair) and squa bbling.We then continued our childhood explorations by spontaneously improvising a classroom injection. My drama teacher acted as a year 3 teacher and my peers and I as the year 3 class. We all interacted well with each other creating stereotypical characters and situations Our task was to give a den in competition with the other team. We used stacked stage to act as a tower and I compete a princess.We chose a fairytale scenario to portray childhood imagination. This in any case helped us maintain high energy levels which are dictatorial for playing children. We used appropriate vocabulary such as founded that firsted tho and you are the bestest to tape the simplicity of childrens language at 7 years old. We improvised arguments with both our own group and our opponents over props and spacing. We also chose to incorporate a fairytale storyline into it and take an opponent from the other team hostage. We also registered how our moods changed quickly e.g. falling out and then making up over again.As I was acting I could find many similarities in my own and others performances in comparison to Blue Remembered Hills characters.Hayley(me) Very similar to Angela.I remained seated at the hook of our pretend towers dishing orders out and generally being very bossy. I also represent her flirtatious side by settling a row between 2 boys over who would be my prince why dont you both be princes then you can both kiss me This links to Angela because she is also very bossy and flirtatious.Warren very similar to Raymond.He stayed well away from the arguments and instead chose to play alone with his pretend guns.Sophie very similar to Audrey.Backed up everything I said (Angela). Held doll when I was climbing etc. Wanted attention constantly.EvaluationI think my performance as a 7 year old was well thought through. I used appropriate body language (free and wild) and voice (high pitched and squeaky) to portray my desired character. I think my performance was strong ly influenced by my 7 year old brother and 5 year old sister. I managed to hold the line in role by keeping my energy levels high to feel more like my character. I enjoyed this performance even though I normally dislike spontaneous extemporization tasks. I learnt how important it is to keep up energy levels and momentum when performing as children, I strongly believe that this performance has helped me get the feel and sterilise for childhood performances in the Blue Remembered Hills scenes.Lesson 2Character exploration and Still imageIn our second lesson we were to perform a role play, reenacting a selected scene from the play. This was to allow us to empathize with the characters and familiarize ourselves with their congenericship with each other.I selected the scene with Angela, Andrea and Donald Duck in the barn. We chose to stage this in the round to portray Donalds isolation, the round enabled the audience feel close to us acting feeling the tension. We used appropriate pr oxemics. There were a variety of symptomatics to my role. It is in this scene that woeful fallacy is used a lot as Donalds emotions are portrayed by the grubby, battered barn.PhysicalisationAs I was playing the part of Angela I was aware that her personal characteristics would be very different to my own. I was familiar with Angelas bossy, controlling ways from previous lessons. To portray her characteristics I did the following thingsThis forte showed that I was over confident.As you can see I had hold of the baby the whole time, although it was an effective way to portray status and authority it curiously helped me by restricting me with my hand gestures.I intimidated Donald at the end of the scene by using positioning and movement to my advantage. I used well-be establishd levels to show status Positioned my body as someone with confidence would Used very static and energetic movement to adapt to a 7 yr olds characteristics.I also used movement effectively when intimidating Donald. I circled him to show how my character controls the scene.I used centering which is a good technique to show a character physically. As this nub that my character is ruled by a particular part of the body, I chose to use the arm memory the baby. When I walked, this arm would lead etc. This also emphasized my status due to possessing the doll.My facial expressions changed throughout the scene mainly because of the themes and emotions varying. My facial expressions always portrayed my hubris which is my overconfidence.For framework- concernOh dear. Poor, poor Donald (denoted from text) My expression was very interested and showed that my attention was solely on Donald. This showed the caring and imaginative side to Angela I was also the mommy which may have encouraged me to over-exaggerate.Another example- Anger and intimidationQuack, Quack, Quack (denoted from the text). My expression was very bold and frustrated. This showed my nasty streak.Chosen prop in scene razzing Obvious choice as it helped me adapt to my character and her age. It helped me with my Physicalisation by restraining my body to certain movements. Helped me portray my authority,Relationships with othersAngela shows her authority over Audrey and repeatedly gets her own way.Course I be. I got the babby, aint I? It chunt your doll, AudreyThis dialogue portrays the authority in their friendship. The fact that Angela has the doll and is therefore able to play the mother proves how she has everything Audrey wants. Angela also gets a lot of attention from the boys which is why she gets jealous and frustrated when Audrey gets the attention from Donald, because of this Andrea copies Angela to fit inThe majority of the time the 2 characters get along with each other very well, especially when they play house and get to play the main parts. However when Donald interacts with Audrey, Angela gets angry at him and bullies him she sprains very violent towards him.The proxemics shows the audienc e how the characters feel about each other. This means the way that space is being used to communicate meaning.CommunicationLesson 3We used hot-seating in our 3rd lesson. Hot-seating is where one person takes on the role of a character and answer questions asked by the rest of the group in the way they believe the character would respond. Hot-seating is used to gain a deeper understanding of a specific character.Below are some of the questions we asked Donald Duck along with his answers.Any Brothers and sisters? Did have a baby sister but died from smallpox 3 years ago.Whos your best friend? I like the girls because I can play house with them.Was your father violent? No my daddy didnt believe in ferocity he was a Christian, an honest man.Favorite color? Red like blood.Does your mum hit you because youre drear? I aint no naughty boy she yet gets cross at me sometimes thats all.Why are you more comfortable around the girls? Yes because they let me play and they dont fight like Pet er does.Denoted means information taken straight from the account book.Connoted means to imply and read between the lines.D- Has shoes but no socks. shadowy and anaemicC- poor, not nourished, not cared for?D-Collects empty jam jars for money.C- Look after himself. Independent.D- Doesnt like smacking of the baby not in my houseC- former(prenominal) experiences? Treat kids nicely.D- talks about blood a lot when playing house with the girlsblood all over the saw. logical argument all over me. Blood everywhere. Blood, bloodC- Used to seeing it? Psychotic, fascinated by it.D- Lets have four sugars eh?C- Not normally got it, Rationing. Treat for him.D- imitates authority by banging up and strike down shouting for his tea.C- men dominating?, not used to power.D- Enjoys playing with the girlshe hugs himself with glee, rocking slightlyC- Nice females is different to usual, dont really fit in with boys, attentionD- Doesnt like being called Donald Duck. Goes into a psychotic frenzy as gir ls jeer and pull his hair. He howls but is totally submissive.C- Used to violence? Hates it because his name is not friendly, derogatory term.D- Donald wouldnt show Willie his jam jars until he threatened to kick his head in. The boys think he is a weed and a cry baby one punch and hell give inC-They know retiring(a) history, again evident from Angela in the barn. They use it against him.D- Hes got hold of a box of matches by going through his mams handbag. The boys discuss how she knocks him about, he sets light to the coal shed after she locks him up in it.C- Pyromania, get rid of bad memories. Fire is something he can control, shows status, redeeming feature.Development sectionWe were asked to get into groups of 4 and elaborate and bring out a patch up of drama around the stimulus below.We decided to use flashbacks to portray Donalds emotions. Flashbacks represent and explore the background and emotions of a character or a story we used this as we believed this to be an approp riate way to portray Donalds motives.As flashbacks are used to provide information about a characters past to explain a present situation. We chose to pick scenes where Donald was being abused and victimized by a variety of different people. We portrayed a life of gloom and abuse in all of our scenes. We also used imaging to represent Donalds feelings beneath the surface of his actual character.1st FlashbackWe showed the thing Donald most longs forhis Dad. We fork the audience through dialogue how his father went to war and Donald begged him not to go.2nd FlashbackWe showed how mother abuses him and how he is really scared of her.3rd FlashbackHere we denoted from the text.Audrey smack er one DonaldAngela Yes, and if he hits me I shall tell is mam. Herll skin him alive wont her? She hits you with the poker, dont she?Both Quack, quack, ( hit him etc)We then got Donald to show how he longs to be loved and accepted he begged and showed the audience his innocence. please, please dont, you promised we then went silent to add a contrast of noise and tranquility. However this was again totally contrasted by Peter shouting at him.4th flashbackPeter where them jam jars, dem girls told me you ad umDonald No I aint ad no jarsGirls enter and create a sound collage ( soundscape)yes you did, you ad 10 jars you saidDont lie you saidLiar etc., etc.The soundscaping (Sound collage) was used to emphasize and build a prominent ending . Soundscaping is where the voice and body is used to create sound associated with the atmosphere.We used a tableau at the end. Also known as a lug frame or still image characters freeze as if it is a photograph.We used positioning and levelling Surrounded Donald to show his isolation Peter and girls stood up to show authority Donald sat down to show his lower status compared to the othersAt the end all characters froze and we used direct address (where character speaks directly to the audience) this created spectacular irony. It could be argues that this is a soliloquy as it was also a thought spoken out aloud.Donald All I wanted was my dadthroughout our piece Donald remained on stage rocking and continuously repeating his speech in the stimulus, this emphasized his emotions and gained him sympathy from the audience.When not acting the remaining cast kept our backs to the audience and remained still and cogitate.This lesson we had to prepare a short piece of drama based on scene 6 of Blue Remembered Hills. The squirrel scene includes all of the boys apart from Donald.We used the script and kept the scene totally naturalistic as this is the way that Dennis Potter intended.We began by getting into groups of 4 and planning our piece. We had to decide who was to play which character. I played Raymond, Rebecca played Willie, Reece played the antagonist John and Tom was the protagonist Peter. An antagonist is the character who has some kind of conflict with the main character (in this scene the main character is Peter). A prota gonist is the main character who has some kind of conflict with another character.Another difficult choice was choosing the most suitable staging After studying all of the good and bad points of every staging, we decided to use a thrust stage. We thought this would be most fitting as it makes the audience feel close to our performance, feeling all o our emotions with us. It also allowed us to use the top of the thrust as a focal point to position the squirrel.As the scene was set n the woods we decided that we needed something to act as tree-stumps not only to set the scene but to also help us with our Physicalisation as we were able to sit, stand and hang off them. This also provided us with levels.We began our scene differently to everybody else, instead of beginning with the actual killing of the squirrel we decided to slit after this where all of the characters are silent and full of guilt. We used ad-lib (adding our own speech) at the start of the scene to build tension and p ortray the boys feelings of uncertainty and regret.As we began our piece with an anti-climax it emphasized the themes within the scene such as sadness and lament. We then ran the scene using the script.Throughout the scene it was compulsory that we changed our voice to suit our character. As the play was set in the West Country in 1943 we not only had to change our dialect to suit the place but also our spoken language (during ad-lib) to suit the era. Our tone, pitch, pace and volume all changed throughout the piece along with the mood for example at the begging where there is a major anti-climax our mood is sad and our spirit is low therefore our voice must portray our state of mind. I spoke at a very slow space, with a very low pitch, volume and tone this was to emphasize the themes of sadness and regret. However, because Raymond has a stutter I found that it was particularly difficult to add all of the voice changes as well as the stutter.As I was a 16 year old girl playing the part of a 7 year old boy there was an awful lot of thinks I had to consider in relation to my physicalisation. My posture was no longer feminine and mature, it was slouched and wild. My movement as a 7 year old was never ending I constantly had to keep moving, whether it was slow when sad or quick when happy.My group also chose to use repetition of movement in our piece to emphasize a specific characteristic of our character for example Raymond continuously went to the back wall of our stage to cry. This could also symbolize how Raymond is always at the back, away from all of the action. My positioning of Raymond was well thought through, I remained behind my other actors to show how I was the one against harming the squirrel as I was furthest away. I think that as I played a 7 year old boy well it has proved that I am versatile.Because we were to perform in our classroom we were unable to use lighting, sound or costumes. However if we were able to use them I believe that they would tremendously improve my piece.Costume coloursWillie-Greys, innocences and light blues to symbolize that he is plain.John -Greens, because it is a neutral colour for a neutral character. He is quite jealous of Peter being the strongest.Peter- Bold blacks and reds, as he is a bold character. Sinister.Raymond-Cowboy costume. Shown below.I believe that some recorded effects would have made our piece have more realism about it. A sound of rustling trees and the chirping of birds would have helped set the scene yet kept it realistic.Lighting would have kept the various themes and focus fluent throughout. I would have chosen the below gobos to set the sceneDuring the ad-lib at the start I would have a white managelight on the squirrel to make this the focal point for the audience the white would represent its innocenceI would use a red fresnel spot when Raymond says the word dead. The red would symbolize the death and blood. The fresnel spot is a lot softer like the mood than the par ca n for example.In our final lesson our task was to produce our own script including the character of Wallace Wilson.My scriptSilence.Donald sits alone, curled up tight, head down. He is shaking vigorously, rocking back and forth with continuous chanting.Donald come back Dad, come back Dad..Suddenly, loud shouts and banging is heard off stage. Donald s startled and freezes immediately.(Offstage)Wallace Wilsons mum Gerrout Gerrout thou feivin getA loud smack is heard offstage, followed by a cry of pain.(Offstage)Wallace Wilsons mum constant of gravitation wouldnt dream of stealin my matches if you Da were ere.A tall scruffy boy is seen entering stage right. He sits on the opposite side of the hay to Donald. Wallace is totally unaware of Donalds presence. Donald remains silent and alert as Wallace Wilson begins to sob.Wallace Wilson wewelwell es not Your ere nd I rackt lie you I dunt like you at all II wish you were dead.(pause)Donald (whispered) I fink like that sometime, but I dunt mean it like I dunt mean it at allWallace Wilson (anxiously) HeHello?Donald Me Mam its me sometime you know but I know she dunt mean it like it cuza me DadJaps ave got im.Wallace Wilson Japs ave got ya Da?Donald Yh 2 year now.Wallace Wilson (hesitantly) mine too.(Awkward silence)Wallace Wilson continues to clean the tears from his eyes. Donald lies on his back and gazes up towards the ceiling deep in thought.Donald Does thou mam drink the clear stuff eh?Wallace Wilson Yh, Yh she do. She says it elp er like but it dont.Both boys remain silent and both reflect on their home situations. They become more relaxed in their environment however tug on their turn to feel more secure.(Suddenly Donald breaks the silence)Donald She use the poker like?(Short pause)Wallace Wilson (Softly) Yh.Donald Belt?Wallace Wilson (softly) Yh.(Short pause)Donald For nothin.Wallace Wilson For nowt.(Really long pause)Donald stands upDonald so thou got any matches?Wallace Wilson erm well yer I ave I just gotta A young, pretty blonde girl enters stage right.Angela Who be dere?Wallace Wilson turns and looks in her direction. He quickly wipes his eyes and changes back to his usual boisterous self.Angela OhOh Wallace thou dint know it were you like.On the name of Wallace Wilson Donald realizes whom is actually on the other side of the hay and quickly scarpers stage left.Angela flirtatiously plays with her hairWallace Wilson I were bout t start a fire like I got me matches.Wallace reveals a box of matches from his back pocket.The endSettingWe decided to set our scene in the barn as we felt that this could act as both characters refuge. We felt that comparing the most powerful character with the most weakest would be very effective in terms of similarities and comparisons.CostumesI would like to experiment with costume and maybe dress both characters in the same way. I would dress both characters in dirty clothes, light blue and white in colour. The light blue would symbolize both boys sadness and the white their innocence. Dressing hem both too would further emphasize their similarities.Sound and musicAs this scene is totally dependant on he emotions being portrayed through sound it is compulsory that we kept unnecessary sounds to a minimum. Silence was the most effective form of sound, as it symbolized how both boys had suffered in silence. Silence also made the scene bunglesome and built up tension.Make upI wouldnt use any fantasy make up however I would use a mixture of straight make up and character make up to add dirt and wounds and scars.MasksMasks could be worn by both characters at the start of the scene and then removed when the boys feel comfortable opening up about their lives. This would make the audience aware of the boys feelings towards each other.LightingAt the beginning where Donald is alone and rocking, I believe that a stropescope (where lighting flickers to a rhythm would be really effective. Throughout the piece I would use a fresnel spot as it wou ld create a soft effect as it spreads the light more gently. Another advantage of using this lighting is that it can be focused on a character at an important time. I would use either a white (innocence) or blue (sadness) cinemoid (gel).LevelsBoth boys were sat down to show they are not very powerful or confident. Both stand up at the end however to show how they have become confident in each others company.Set and PropsA haystack (or substitute) to symbolize the barrier between the boys.MovementWe wanted very little movement to show the tension and awkwardness between the boys.VoiceUse both high and low volume depending on the characters mood and confidence. We also changed our tone depending on our confidence. We used appropriate spoken language in our piece.StagingI believe there to be 2 effective staging Proscenium pissed and traverse.Proscenium archThis enables the audience to see both sides of the haystack, and both boys actions and reactions to each other. However the audien ce is not close to the scene.TraverseThis is effective as the audience feel close to the actors this enforces the tension upon them. Although the audience are nearer it is quite possible that they are unable to see both characters due to blocking.
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