Acting Ensemble: The Cherry Orchard (DRA4395.01)

Jennifer Rohn

The Polish theater director Jerzy Grotowski defined his theory of “poor theatre” as the theatre that values the body of the actor and its relation with the spectator. Poor Theatre used the simplest of sets, costumes,lighting and props requiring the actors to employ all of their skills to transform a space into other imaginative worlds.

In this course, we will rehearse and perform a production of Anton Chekhov’s The Cherry Orchard. Our approach will be fully actor-driven, and ensemble based with minimal design elements. Our focus will be on bringing the characters wholly to life, both physically and emotionally in a rehearsal process dedicated to imagining and creating the world of the play. We will seek to find the strongest, most action filled dynamics in the relationships between characters. Rehearsals will take place in class with an additional one night a week for the first half of the term. Possible additional rehearsals will be scheduled as needed towards the end of the term in consultation with the ensemble, with performances at the end of the term. Auditions will take place in the fall. Everyone is encouraged to audition-all roles are available for any and all actors, regardless of race, heritage or gender identification. The rehearsal process will be rigorous and actors should be prepared to commit to a physically based, ensemble driven process.

Learning Outcomes:
-advance collaboration skills as a member of an ensemble
-explore a variety of physically based rehearsal practices
-advance ability to make bold physical and action-based character choices on stage
-advance text analysis and research skills in the creation of the world of the play

Delivery Method: Fully in-person
Prerequisites: Auditions will be at the beginning of the Fall 2024 term, but I am happy to discuss the course this term.
Course Level: 4000-level
Credits: 4
Tu 7:00PM - 10:00PM, W 2:10PM - 5:50PM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 16
Course Frequency: One time only

Categories: 4000 , All courses , Day/Time Changes , Drama , Four Credit , Fully In-Person , Updates