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Drafting your show -- Concept and Rehearsals


Fundamentals of Stage Directing * THR331 * Directing: Laws, Rules, Principles * Topics : Stage Event = Subjective Time + Dramatic Space * *

TOPICS: drama + comedy + postmodern + time + space + show + spectacle + audience + theory + public +
Theatre Studies as opposed to a drama school? "A university degree possesses more market value than a professional theatre qualification from an actor-training institution precisely because university students have the opportunity to develop a wide range of skills." (D’cruz 1996, 36)
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2005: I am avo kaprealian, 19 years old, I love theatre, films, music (ART)

But my dream is or was to be a filmmaker

I said WAS because in my country there are not any university to filmmaking or to be a theatre director …

I search ur site (vthatre) but I don’t know how I will be an online student???!!!! i read several pages but I don’t know!!!!!

I have experience in theatre acting (I ACTED IN 2 PLAYS)

And directing one play to 16 years old students

I studied something about filmmaking such as(camera angels,,

Frames sizes,,shots ,,etc…)


About filmmaking..and how can I use ur site to study theatre acting and theatre directing , …


I do not answer emails, and the above one is the reason why.

This letter from Armenia is from one of the millions lost minds from around the world.

I'll be 56 on 3.1.2005; I wish I could take a class from Sophocles or Shakespeare. Most of the people I would like to study with are dead. What do I do?

I take their scripts, books, paintings -- and I study. Day after day, for many years. My webpages are the by-product of this process. I know that I can't sent email to William... I am his cyber-student.

Since I am using the webpages for actual (live) classes, I have to make this pages "students" in every course directory to help you in your "homework"!

First, read the title, preface and intro pages (and the course syllabus, of course). See the support pages, like FAQ, Dictionary, Links, Books and etc.

THR331 Fundamentals of Stage Directing has a prerequisite (THR121 Fundamentals of Acting), please go to the acting directory and see what I expect you to know. Usually, I give a non-grade test in class on our first meeting; to see what you know or don't know.

Also, this class is required for the THR470 Film Directing; I suggest you check it too.

If you didn't take THR423 Playscript Analysis or at least THR215 Dramatic Literature, we, you and I, are in trouble.

Well, I am working on webpages, while I am teaching; you better bookmark them and check periodically!

Winter Shorts: Student-Directed (THR331 is required)

Next Step: SDA show (5.17.03)

"Before I switch the gears and forget about UAF for a couple of months, some guidelines about your show (no title yet):
I will put on reserve Abrah's Director's Book (each of you should get this kind of master-fire right away).
1. Text (scene/play)
2. One-page-directorial-concept
3. "Poor Theatre" setting -- Kade will write what you expect on the tech side (no-budget show, maybe $50 each from our Dept.).
4. Tara plans to have one week for you to costume -- you should have good ideas by then.
5. Production Manager (I don't know about the composition of SDA in the Fall) -- get our new guy (from TX), Kurt

Chip, if you are to pick up some script from the Albee Conference, get the written permission to perform (talk to Tom about the form).

If I won't get your proposals (texts) by July 1, I will assign the scenes for you. Any original/new material must go through stage-reading first.

If there are more directors-in-closet, I need to know now (Carey?).

Please, post your ideas/texts here -- directors' forum.

#? We don't have designers for you (costume, set, light, sound, makeup and so on), get somebody or do it yourself...


PS. Stay with Comedy (genre) to balance The Possessed (heavy drama)."

Directing, Acting, Thr w/Anatoly

Part I: Plays
Part II: Actors
Part III: Stage
Part IV: Public
Part V: Hamlet, showcase

Proposal for 10 minute winter short---UAF
Fall 2003: Grace Eagle Reed

The proposal I would like to submit is from the script of Bertolt Brecht’s Mother Courage. I will concentrate on scene 11 and 12. I would like to direct in as much as Epic style theatre as possible.

I am studying the scenes written in Lee Jacobus’s book, Drama and Cole/Chinoy’s Directors on Directing.

I have the scenes clearly worked out in my head and stage set up drawn on paper with characters, props, costumes, lighting, music and script needed.


Mother Courage


Eight soldiers (4 will suffice)

Man/Woman Peasant

Two people that will represent Mother Courage’s sons (they will be under white sheets as ghost)

Props----rather tall box that character Kattrin can stand on while drumming

Wagon, not too big but large enough to hold about 25-30 stuffed dolls.
Twenty five or so dolls that will be sitting around the box where Kattrin is drumming
Drum—guns---swords---war paraphernalia and an axe.
A shaped ladder

Costumes----dull, worn, tattered, but period peasant dress, soldiers uniforms can be modern military from Value Village for instance. White ‘ghost’ sheets for two characters under them.

Lighting---mostly white spotlight on Mother Courage as she circles with cart, red one for Kattrin as she is murdered---but simple lighting.

Music---I want to start with classic 60’s war protest songs (excerpts) The Byrds, Turn/Turn/Turn, Bob Dylan’s, Blowing in the Wind and/or Barry McGuire’s Eve of Destruction ----- and end with that too. All actors will be on stage and will stay on stage but march in circles. Kattrin will lay on stage and join her brothers as they march in back of Mother Courage while she is following the soldiers.
Script---I would like to play with the script a bit due to time allotment and will need to consult and get help with this. I am reading some good suggestions from the books I am studying for this particular play.

Let me know what else I need to submit but this is a start toward the fall activity for Winter Shorts or whatever we are going to do.



There are assingments and homework (including the reading) and even tests pages, but this is not an online class, only web-supported. Remember that this is not a lecture-class and I make all those webpages to cut lecturing to minimum in classroom. This is a seminar-workshop style course. If you have questions, you email me. If some links are dead, you report. If you missed the class, I have to have your email message for record. Secret: you ARE director = direct your studies, direct yourself!


You must do your own research, read the pages in SHOWS directory; I tried to make each show I direct as a showcase for student-directors. If you need extra help in your research, subscribe to Directors Forum and post your questions to the members. If you are competely new, go to the Theatre w/Anatoly directory! 2008 updates @
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Sample of the homework for directors:

Darren Johnson
Theatre 331—Fundamentals of Directing for Stage & Film

Suggestions for Hamlet

Act 5, Scene 1 (joined in progress)

Characters: Hamlet, Horatio, and “Clown 1” (gravedigger)

Setting: Churchyard cemetery, early morning

Props needed: skull, bones, shovel

Hamlet and Horatio are walking through churchyard cemetery when they chance upon a man digging a grave (Clown 1) The grave is being dug for Ophelia, unbeknownst to Hamlet. Hamlet asks whose skull this was on the ground. It is the skull of Yorick, the Court Jester that entertained Hamlet’s father and had been like an uncle to Hamlet in his childhood.
This scene should take place in the early morning, as was custom for funerals at Shakespeare’s time. The lighting, therefore, must reinforce this decision by being of medium brightness.
The cemetery can be shown by the green floor, with black holes for graves, and the backdrop can be painted to appear as though the cemetery stretches into the distance.
In this portion of the scene, Hamlet is unaware that Ophelia is going to be buried, so we want the suspense to be building up toward this realization. Therefore, the pace and the mood of this section should not be so heightened that the soon-to-come twist will be overshadowed, and anticlimactic as a result.

Hamlet: (referring to skull on ground)

Whose was it?

First Clown:
A whoreson mad fellow’s it was: whose do you think it was?

Nay, I know not.

First Clown:
A pestilence on him for a mad rogue! a’ poured a flagon of Rhenish on my head once. This same skull, sir, was Yorick’s skull, the king’s jester.


First Clown:
E’en that.

Let me see.

Takes the skull

Alas, poor Yorick, I knew him, Horatio: a fellow of infinite jest, of most excellent fancy: he hath borne me on his back a thousand times; and now, how abhorred in my imagination it is! My gorge rims at it. Here hung those lips that I have kissed I know not how oft. Where be your gibes now? Your gambols? Your songs? Your flashes of merriment, that were wont to set the table on a roar? Not one now, to mock your own grinning? Quite chap-fallen? Now get you to my lady’s chamber, and tell her, let her paint an inch thick, to favour she must come; make her laugh at that. Prithee, Horatio, tell me one thing.

What’s that, my lord?

Dost thou think Alexander looked o’ this fashion in the earth?

E’en so.

And smelt so? Pah!

Puts down the skull

E’en so, my lord.

To what base uses we may return, Horatio! Why may not imagination trace the noble dust of Alexander, till he find it stopping a bung-hole?

‘Twere to consider to curiously, to consider so.

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