One of the most exciting, creative, and popular forms of writing is scripting for the stage. It is the kind of functional writing that integrates both communication and imagination in innovative ways, considering not only narrative but the logistics of the form itself –lighting, sound effects, stage directions, restraints (or opportunities) with the stage, needs of the actors, and more. Dramatic writing is also one of the most challenging to do effectively and with originality and is an advanced skill in the writer’s community.
In this eight-week course, students will learn how to apply script writing conventions and techniques to creating one stageplay –ten fully polished pages that equate to a 10-minute play. They will consider their audiences’ needs and those of the actors/performers as they develop their narratives and themes. Students will learn how to write in this new form by studying examples of various visual narratives. We will review recorded scenes from performed plays and TV shows to understand dialogue, character proxemics, and prosodics (spacing and tone).
The aim of this course is to produce one fully polished 10-minute stageplay that will then be submitted to the following competitions and opportunities:
- Three plays are to be selected by one of the following venues for a run-through reading with professional actors in a live theatre.
- Breadcrumbs Productions/Wunderbar in Syracuse, NY
- LeMoyne College in Syracuse, NY
- Russell Sage College in Troy, NY
- The Princeton Ten-Minute Play Contest(Please note that this particular competition is for 11th-grade students in the US and the international equivalent of that grade).
- The Blank Theatre Young Playwrights Festival Competition
- New Voices One-Act Competition for Young Playwrights.
- All pieces will be published on www.haringeyunchained.com and www.peoplesrepublicofcreativity.com.
|1||Intro to the course – What is Dramatic Writing?|
|2||Setting in a stageplay (and Genre and Character)|
|3||Finding Your Character|
|4||Conventions of the written stageplay form – stage directions, layout of form|
|5||Freytag’s Dramatic Structure (acts 1-3) – alongside anti structure versus/linear structure|
|6||Using Dialogue to Develop Character Arc and Create Tension in Dramatic Writing|
|7||Focus to be based on the needs of the students and the progress of their scripts|
|8||Workshopping pages – student readings and performances plus writer’s descriptions of intentions|
Students and their parents will receive brief feedback after each class, via Teachworks, regarding the student’s general participation in class. Students will also receive feedback on graded assignments via email. At the end of the course, the student will receive a final report card, which thoroughly speaks to their overall participation in the course, including major assignments.
10 hours of classes, 90 minutes/class