Friday, April 24, 2015

A Minuet and Much Ado

I love the storybook feel of this "Minuet" and as you'll see in future postings, it inspired a few more of mini collages that look like they might belong in a children's book. As I said, I originally thought I'd go abstract with this project but illustration fever has got hold of me and won't let go.

Last night I watched one of the casts (there's three in total because there's so many students) perform Much Ado About Nothing and they were awesome! Have to confess I got teary-eyed. My part in all this was to coach students individually or in small groups to refine their performance: improving enunciation, volume, body language, vocal acting, and emotional connection to (and presentation of) their characters. I loved seeing all that work melded into the play as a whole. I pushed them so hard, working some scenes over and over, and it was thrilling to see that ultimately, my guidance and encouragement "stuck" in their heads. There were moments where I wondered whether or not I was being heard. However, fueled by adrenaline and the hunger for applause, the students rose to the occasion. And on the 451st anniversary of William Shakespeare's birth no less! The bard would have been proud!

Tonight, the youngest cast performs (4th and 5th graders.) As you might imagine, they've been having the roughest time of it (Shakespeare's tough!) and oh! if we could have just another week! Alas! That's not going to happen so I'll be in the front row on book (following along with the script), ready to add some gentle prompting if someone gets stuck. I'll be happy when this is all over but give me a restful summer and I'll be ready to charge back in...

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