Sunday, 16 January 2011

Applied Theatre Shows.

Friday was an evening of Applied Theatre work. Firstly the Level 2 students performed the greatest hits from last semester's three political cabaret shows. It was an interesting evening with more staff - including the Principal - showing up. The work felt slightly more edgy than before and the audience less willing to embrace some of the more dangerous material, perhaps most of the audience had seen the work previously, perhaps the new guests changed the dynamic? There was a lot unease at anything which scorned the royal wedding.

Either way it's hard to redo work that was created in response to specific events or moments and occasionally the team struggled to dredge up the sense of urgency and importance that had initially infused the sketches. It's still a fine body of material and a real tribute to the students, both as writers and performers, that they've managed to create a sustainable body of fresh and original work over a three month period. At their best they've been fearless, forthright and subversive, suggestive of a new way forward for the student voice. It's been a very successful module.

On to Studio 3 where the level 3 students performed their verbatim show taken from interviews conducted on the streets of Twickenham. There were some neat observations and studied character work. Overall though it's a work in progress thin on material, a collage of parodied voices rather than a nuanced or themed exploration of what is to live and work here. Still it was enjoyable enough for its own sake and hinted at a larger, more textured work in the future.

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