For this reading, you will prepare and present a selection of prose (fiction or non-fiction), poetry, drama or Readers Theatre. You can work solo or with partners; each individual's contribution should be between 4 and 6 minutes.
Individuals planning a solo final performance may choose poetry, prose or dramatic literature as well as non-traditional forms such as biographies, autobiographies, histories, letters and essays. Duos, trios and groups of four may elect to perform dramatic literature or script prose into reader's theatre scripts. All students should select literature that allows them to show what they have learned over the semester, and which allow ample opportunity to explore dynamic use of voice, body and space. Selections should be matched to the dynamic range of individual group members. Groups should be careful to select literature that allows a balance of material for each performer. Students choosing prose non-fiction should review Chapter 9 of their text, Assorted Roles. Group performers of prose fiction or drama should review Chapter 10 of their text, Readers Theatre and Chamber Theatre.
After making a selection, complete a full dramatistic and modal analysis. In keeping with the expanded theme of this assignment, use other analytical models applicable to your selection. For example, if you do a selection of a diary, letter or autobiography, a biographical analysis and extrinsic research on the author will be necessary to fully understand the persona evident in the selection. Use other analytical tools (such as "four levels of characterization") as needed or prescribed by the selection itself. No papers need be written or turned in; your analysis for this final project is entirely practical: it should lead to a better introduction and more effective performance.
The most challenging aspect of this assignment for groups performing together is coming to a group consensus on the adaptation of the source material and staging of the performance. Sensitivity to the concerns and ideas of others is crucial to the overall success of your performance. Every group member should bring selections so the group can find the piece that best fits everyone's talents and tastes.
You do not have to provide me with a copy of your story, poem or play. If you do a lot of editing, retyping would make your manuscript easier to use in performance. Avoid using the actual book if the type is too small. Enlarging the pages on a copying machine will facilitate your reading. We will not have time in class to cover scripting prose fiction into reader's theatre scripts. If you and a few members of your group want to explore scripting, please consult with online resources for scripting and script format (but disregard the time limits prescribed there).
YOUR ANALYTIC DECISIONS INTO PERFORMANCE ANALOGS
When you have done a thorough examination of your selection, begin choosing performance analogs. Active selection of analogs (not silent consideration) will be more efficient and productive. Let your voice and body help you choose analogs. Let your analytic findings prompt vocal and physical responsiveness. Here are some questions meant to prompt analog ideas:
Be sure to consider the beginning energy, how the selection flows, ways to keep it dynamic, when to change intensities and how to end the performance. Rehearse your selection and introduction thoroughly on your own or with your group.
Students will receive an individual grade for their solo work or work within a group. An evaluation form will be used to assess your performance. Readers Theatre performers will need a special evaluation form, as will group performers of dramatic scenes. Performers of Poetry should use the same form as previously used, as should performers of prose.