Objective: Students will demonstrate an understanding of current practices on Broadway by participating in a group discussion on recent performances and taking a pre-assessment quiz on their prior knowledge.
Materials Needed: Great White Way, What Now?! Worksheet, Musical Theatre PPT, Class Chromebooks/ Laptops for research
Hook: Great White Way, What Now?! (Pre-Assessment)
As the students come into class, have the seats arranged around the projector, and hand out TheGreat White Way, What Now?! worksheets to them. Challenge them to write down everything they currently know about each production on the worksheet. Reassure those who don’t know any of the productions that we will discuss them together throughout class. Evaluate their prior knowledge of musical productions by “blind voting”- students will cover their eyes and raise their hand if they know about the productions you call out from the worksheet.
Studying drama would be incomplete without knowledge of musical theatre. American theatre would be considerable less without it. It is a vital part of our country’s theatre history. Some people are hesitant to want to explore this aspect of drama, but its potential and ability to tell stories can’t be denied. Based on our blind voting, we have a generally limited knowledge of musicals, so today I want to expose you to current productions on Broadway. Think of this as a smorgasbord for you to become more familiar with how musicals tell stories in various ways.
Step 1: Musical Theatre PPT/ Discussion
Set up the projector to show the PPT of current and recent Broadway musicals clips. Provide context for each production before starting the clip. Questions for discussion: What tools are being used to tell the story? How does technique affect the storytelling? What style of music, dance, and theatre do you see? Why do you think this production ran for so long? Why do you think this production won this award? Would you want to see the full production after watching this clip? Yes or no?
Wrap Up/ Conclusion: Final Project Explanation
Hand out the Musical Theatre Final Project worksheet, and go over their three options and the requirements for each project. Clarify and answer any questions students might have. For the remainder of the class, give the students time to choose their performance piece using the classroom Chromebooks/ laptops or recommendations and suggestions from you.