August 15, 2013

Week 1: Day 4

By Robert
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I am not currently built for yoga. Either that, or my limbs are rebelling after the amount of exercise I’ve been doing this week after weeks of nothing. This afternoon’s yoga session was not as relaxing as I’d expected… Especially when on my back pushing my feet up and over my head. Next time I’m bringing cushions.

Back to this morning, we had a TV class. We discussed some of the key aspects of a tv production and the technical names (turns out in this context ‘gaffer’ isn’t one of the Tetley Tea characters or someone who makes amusing mistakes…) before comparing and contrasting styles of filming. This afforded us the first history lesson of the day as we caught up with what Eastenders’ Max Branning was doing in autumn 2010 and relived the classic reveal in Emmerdale of a daughter’s drug addiction and the subsequent disappointment of her parents.

At one stage we were asked what TV we watched and anything I had ever seen completely disappeared from memory and all I could say was:

“I like The Great British Bake Off… Is that multi-camera…?”

Stagecraft class involved discussions of how to research a play before reading it (understanding the culture of the time, key events, attitudes of the playwright etc). It was time for the second history lesson of the day. Taking 1955 as an example, we compiled a list of all the possible things that affected society (post WW2, rise of the ‘teenager’, fall of the empire and so on as well as the popular culture of the time – films, fashion etc) and how that might affect the writing in a play (such as references or attitudes evident which would have been common then but aren’t any more). I was all ready to chuck the Suez Crisis into the mix but I didn’t because I couldn’t remember the date, which is lucky because I’ve just checked and, as you’ll all be shouting at your screens, it was 1956. As Roy Walker would say on the classic ‘shout things that aren’t actually catchphrases’ tv show Catchphrase (I’m a seriously big fan):

“It’s good but it’s not right…”

After lunch was another Voice class in which we revisited the posture and breathing techniques from earlier in the week and also introduced ourselves for a minute so we would be filmed and our breathing and voice could be studied. I talked about my first pair of glasses aged 4 and the time I heard my brother’s pet snails eating lettuce very loudly in the dark.

I’d better go and finish learning my monologue for tomorrow. We’re only performing them in front of the whole school and faculty so, as the man said about the flat tire, there’s no pressure…

“Say what you see!”

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