Part 1 – Context
- I have loved acting since a young age and have always gotten involved as much as possible. Firstly I have been a part of several drama groups such as the Theatre Royals Youth Theatre, Spinning Wheel Takeover, LMA, and my schools drama club; which as well as being in I have also ran on several occasions. With the Theatre Royal I have been in multiple performances such ‘Punk Rock’ by ‘Simon Stephens’, ‘Lungs’ by ‘Duncan McMillan’, ‘Alice’ by Laura Wade and several others. With Spinning Wheel I worked with a group to stage, market and perform in a show we wrote ourselves called ‘Tangled Tales’, on top of this we ran a series of performing workshops lead by us for younger children. We performed the show both in Bury and then also in Sheringham for a week, where we also ran a talent show, were in the yearly carnival and advertised through radio and newspapers. Shakespeare is another area I am quite familiar with as I studied ‘Romeo And Juliet’, ‘Macbeth’ and ‘The Merchant Of Venice’ at school. As well as this I have taken part in the Shakespeare Schools Festival for as long as I can remember, doing pieces such as ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream’, ‘Much Ado About Nothing’, ‘Twelfth Night’, ‘Richard III’, ‘Henry V’ and ‘The Tempest’. I also took drama as a GCSE and as an AS receiving an ‘A’ grade in both. I have my bronze arts award and also was involved in the ‘creative choices day’ at the Theatre Royal. On top of this I spent my work experience at the Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds and was able to attend the read throughs for the upcoming pantomime which was Cinderella.
- I have chosen to study performing and production arts because drama has always been a huge part of my life and something I have always enjoyed, so I wanted to be able to continue with this. I can honestly say it is my greatest passion to perform, learn about theatre and to explore different plays and performances, hence why I want to follow the acting pathway. I have seen several shows at Conservatoire east and enjoyed them a lot so am eager to join the course to partake in the upcoming shows. Through doing this course at Conservatoire East I hope to further develop my acting and performance skills and also gain and idea of where I want to end up.
- At the moment I am still unsure of where I would like to end up career wise, so it is hard to say what I would like to do after the two years at Conservatoire East. However I know that my dream is to be working somewhere within the theatre industry, so I hope that the course will give me a better idea of what route to take. I think that I might enjoy teaching theatre, possibly even becoming a theatre critic or maybe in broadcasting so would be looking at university courses but alternatively I may want to follow performing and look at getting into drama school.
Part 2- Skills Analysis
In acting I have experienced working in different styles of theatre and also on various different types of stages for different audiences. This knowledge and understanding is something I will bring and apply to the drama course. For example I have performed in the round, on a thrust stage, traverse and also proscenium arched stages, so I am already aware of the adjustments you need to make as an actor when performing in these. I also have looked at different styles of theatre both in and out of school including physical theatre, verbatim theatre, classical theatre, symbolic, naturalistic and realistic theatre. Alongside these I have also looked into practitioners such as Brecht, Stanislavski and Berkoff, so will be able to apply their different techniques throughout the two years. These are all things I feel particularly confident in and would say are some of my strengths.
As well as this I have had experience of putting together a whole show from scratch with a group of people. Due to this I have been developing skills of script writing, organisation, team work and time management. With Spinning Wheel Theatre Company we wrote a script aimed at a family based audience and then blocked, marketed, advertised, and performed in the show ourselves. These are skills I think will be useful at conservatoire east. Alongside the show we created, we also ran a week of performing workshops for young children which we aimed to engage the children in the arts.
As well as acting I also enjoy watching different types of performances. I am a huge fan of musicals, contemporary and classical theatre and have seen larger west end productions and theatre pieces in London’s most well-known theatres. But as well as this I like to go to local theatres and performances as often as I can, my favourites and those I visit most frequently being the Theatre Royal in Bury, The Apex and Cambridge Arts Theatre. Due to the fact I watch a lot of theatre myself, I think I could bring not only a wider understanding of theatre but also my passion and enthusiasm for it, which again id say is one of my biggest strengths.
On top of this I have been in several shows and have developed line learning techniques. However I have also been in improvisation shows so also have experience in working from nothing too. Although this is the case, something I am less confident with is auditions and I hope that at Conservatoire East this is something that I can work on and develop, as sometimes I struggle to find a good effective monologue that suites me and also how to approach auditions In general. I also have little experience with singing and although I am taking the drama pathway, I still feel that this could be an area that could be useful to have some familiarity with, so I hope to audition for the musicals too as to gain another useful skill.
The monologue in which I have chosen to do for my summer work is from ‘The Two Gentlemen Of Verona’ and is in Act 1 Scene 2. The play is believed to be the first of Shakespeare’s works and thought to be written between 1590 and 1591. The character who I am playing is Julia and she is the lady that Proteus has fallen in love with. She is first seen in the play talking to her waiting woman Lucetta about which of her suitors she likes most. Lucetta then goes on to talking about Proteus and that she accepted a letter pretending to be Julia without telling her, this is a love letter from Proteus and makes Julia angry that Lucetta hid it from her. Julia doesn’t want Lucetta to know how in love with Proteus she is so she ends up tearing up the letter to try and show that she doesn’t care about love anyway and that it didn’t matter to her.
Howerver you then see in my chosen monologue that she does care and love him and how much she regrets rashly tearing up the love letter. This monologue shows her true love for Proteus and can be funny if done well at reflects the fact it is a Shakespearean comedy. This monologue also builds an idea for how much she will do to be with Proteus, which later leads to her disguising as a boy to see Proteus when he leaves under his father’s orders to go to Milan with his friend Valentine. On arriving in Milan Julia then realises Proteus has fallen for another girl but after Proteus’s several betrayals of trust with Valentine and Thurio and being turned down by Silvia the two end up married as do most of Shakespeare’s comedies.