Blocking and Physicality
by Michaella Scholz
Students will demonstrate their understanding of blocking and physicality by being able to add and execute movement in their performing piece (monologue, audition piece, etc.).
Video Clip, Red and Green Construction Paper; it’s helpful to have different types of characters written on the back it, Expo Markers and Students need to have performance pieces
Ask the students how our bodies and faces create a character? Tell them to look for how a character can be created through facial expressions and movement. Then show a clip that focuses on movement and physicality.
Jimmy Fallon and Will Farrell Start 00:52-1:22 Start 6:53-8:00
Discussion – Lead in with the question. How did Will Farrell create a character through his face and/or body?
Start walking around the room. How can adding movement and physicality can give the audience clues about the character? What about what is happening in the monologue? We as humans express ourselves through our bodies all the time. And the characters we play shouldn’t be any different.
Ask if someone can explain the rules for red light green light. Ask the class if they agree. Tell students that you are going to have them stand up in a moment and we will play red light green light. I will say a character and hold up a red or green piece of paper. If it is green the students will begin moving towards me as if they were that character. Students are not allowed to run or move faster than the character would. For example if the character is an old woman, students will not be walking faster than an actual old woman. If it is red students are expected to stay where they are, a character will be said but they are not to act as that character. Just freeze how they are. Keep playing until someone wins or we need to move on.
List of Characters: Mopey Teenager, Disney Princess, A Sore Football player, Egyptian, Cowboy, Mr. Bean, A baby, Bad Boy, Alien, Gangster, A blind person, Cat Lady, Nerd, Spy, Valley Girl, Villain, Zombie, Hermit, Child, Hunter, Coward, Magician, Show-off, Model, Investigator, Slave, Santa Claus, Clown, Peter Pan, Batman, President
Explain to students that movement around the stage isn’t the only thing that can convey a character but our facial expression and how we stand.
Have a student that you’ve talked to before class come up and model the learning activity “10 Second Emotion.” In 10 second emotion you give the student an emotion and 1 is neutral and 10 is the extreme. As you count up the student shows the emotion escalating using their face and body. After the student models this, have the class get into groups and have them face each other. Then as groups they will play “10 Second Emotion.” As students get more comfortable, counting can go up and down. Ex: 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,6,5,4…
Write on the board: “Why do we use movement and physicality in acting?” and allow students to come up and write down on the board their reasons for it. Ask students what are some common threads that were written? Allow students to make comments and discuss on the common threads that they wrote.
Have students go back to their seats and take out their performance piece and look at where they can add movement and physicality. Have students take notes on their script. Students will assessed by seeing that they were able to apply movement and physicality based on emotion and their character. Have students come up and show you their work, after they get the okay from you have them find a partner.
With their partner they will perform their piece with the movement and physicality they have chosen. They will then discuss their movement choices. Have students explain to their partner why they chose those specific movements. Allow the partner respond and give feedback on if the movement helped elevate the character. Once one has performed and discussed, the other partner will perform and discuss.
Have student do an “Exit Slip” and have them answer the question “The most important thing I learned today was?”
Students will be assessed on their notes on their script and/or their performance for a partner.