Speech, communication and presentation skills are abilities all students must hone if they are to be successful in life. This is something the Year 9 students have come to realize this term as they have worked on how they can communicate through more than just words alone.
When young actors first come to the craft of acting, they often feel that once they have their lines memorized, their job is done. Many students are unfamiliar with the idea that text needs to be examined, thought about, and practiced in different ways.
Text analysis can seem boring and academic, but when understood more deeply as an artistic pursuit, it becomes an active choice-making process that allows the actor to impart their own ideas about the character through the text. If an actor is simply spouting lines, important information can be lost and the audience can become confused and disengaged.
The Year 9 students have put this theory to the test by incorporating a monologue into a devised piece of work this month, thinking carefully about how they can fully engage their audience and portray a range of emotions. Looking at the text and fully understanding the words was the first task, something which many students found difficult due to the monologue being written in a thick Liverpudlian accent. Once the words were understood, portraying emotion, bringing the words to life, and connecting with the audience became simpler.
The skills perfected in this activity are abilities the students will use frequently throughout their lives. Whether it is trying to convince a panel of university tutors that you are right for their university, or persuading a bank to invest in your business, making your words dance is key.