Students will demonstrate their understanding and exploration of Stanislavsky’s foundational acting system elements by incorporating them in a monologue or scene performance.
Learning Level & Class:
Advanced students/seniors willing to explore and challenge themselves to move beyond the first choice; 85 minute class periods
Students have already been introduced to Shakespeare and explored his words in other units; text analysis; objectives and tactics; beats/action units; acting tools and creative acting choices
TH:Cr1.1.HSIII a. Synthesize knowledge from a variety of dramatic forms, theatrical conventions, and technologies to create the visual composition of a drama/ theatre work.
TH:Cr3.1.HSIII b. Synthesize ideas from research, script analysis, and context to create a performance that is believable, authentic, and relevant in a drama/theatre work.
TH:Pr4.1.HSIII b. Apply a variety of researched acting techniques as an approach to character choices in a drama/theatre work.
TH:Pr5.1.HSIII a. Use and justify a collection of acting exercises from reliable resources to prepare a believable and sustainable performance.
TH:Re8.1.HSIII a. Use detailed supporting evidence and appropriate criteria to revise personal work and interpret the work of others when participating in or observing a drama/ theatre work.
TH:Cn11.2.HSIII a. Justify the creative choices made in a devised or scripted drama/theatre work, based on a critical interpretation of specific data from theatre research.
Acting is all about making specific, detailed choices.
There are many different acting techniques to draw on for personal acting tools.
Students will understand the effect their creative acting choices have on a performance.
Students will learn the importance of exploring and moving beyond the first, easy choice.
Students will examine how text analysis informs creative choices.
How do I make good acting choices?
What does honest acting look, sound, and feel like?
For this unit I chose as script/performance work pieces from Shakespeare; Shakespeare Meets Stanislavsky; the students got to select a scene or monologue from one of Shakespeare’s plays to use as the performance focus. I used the Utah Shakespeare Festival High School Competition ballots as the final evaluation of the performance. However, any script can fit in place of this text work.
Students should already have an acting piece assigned/chosen to work on in the first lesson. It is expected that they will have their script with them daily.
The program this was originally taught in uses a routine of a writing journal (called an “Actor’s Log”) where students can take notes, respond to writing prompts, place handouts, etc.
The exercises used in this unit come primarily from Merlin’s Konstantin Stanislavsky (KS) and Gordon’s Stanislavsky in America. Noted in the unit as: KS and SA for future reference.
Objective: Students will demonstrate their understanding of their piece by performing in a preview. Students will demonstrate their understanding of acting principles by given written feedback to their peers.