By Monica Prendergast, Juliana Saxton
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Additional info for Applied Drama: A Facilitator’s Handbook for Working in Community
The focus of these activities should be on something beyond the people themselves in these introductory exercises, as in the game Line-Ups. Here, a group has to organize themselves in a line according to called out categories as quickly as they can (in order of age, how long they have lived in Canada, or how they position themselves politically from very liberal to very conservative). The “results” of Line-Ups may be revealing and lead to rich discussions or debates but, to begin with, the focus for participants is simply on getting the job of lining up done in ten seconds or less.
How light or dark will a given dramatic work be? How filled with sound and silence? How may movement and stillness interplay with each other? Tension is fundamental to intellectual and emotional engagement in drama and acts as the bonding agent that sustains involvement. Ten26 Entering the Process sion is not the same as conflict, as conflict is a much more overt and less subtle form of tension. ”). ”). These are the kinds of tensions that Heathcote says are “what keeps everyone there dealing with the situation” (cited in Bolton, 1997, p.
Personal perspectives are mediated within the context of the role in order to further the group’s dramatic investigation. Often, dramatic process will involve both protagonist and antagonist roles and challenges participants to empathize with characters whose interests are in what Dorothy Heathcote calls “productive tension” (Bolton, 1997, p. 25). For example, in Cecily O’Neill’s process drama “The Seal Wife” (O’Neill, 1995; Taylor, 2000), participants explore the motivations of a husband who has stolen his seal-wife’s skin because he has fallen deeply in love with her and that is the only way he can keep her with him: he is both lover and thief.