Our first week of rehearsals for the session is in the books! This session, we have three different ensembles - 2 for teens (ages 15-21) and one for adults (ages 22+). Each ensemble is led by a pair of teaching artists, and supported by a team of volunteer facilitators. These groups will work together to devise two original shows this fall. Read on to learn more about what we did in our first week of class, who’s who in all of our ensembles, and how you can see our big shows!
What did we do?
Week 1 of every sessions is about bonding as an ensemble, getting to know each other, and establishing some basic performance skills such as following direction, making decisions, and using our bodies as well as our voices.
Many of our longterm actors graduated in the spring, so we had space to welcome FIVE new actors to the Teen ensembles. Sophie, Ryan, Maggie and Matthew all jumped right in on Mondays, and Colin is with us on Fridays. We’re excited to watch them grow as performers throughout the year! This session, both of the teen ensembles are developing their own stories around the idea of assumptions. To do this, we worked our way through a Questionnaire to reflect on our own lives. We worked our way through 16 questions, including:
What’s something you would NEVER do? Why? What would have to happen to make you do it?
What were you really into when you were young that you don’t like now?
Describe a time you surprised. What happened? How did you react?
Do you have a secret talent?
This was a cool way to learn more about each other, but also to get some ideas for stories we can draw out for the show. (We already have a musical number planned around our secret talents). Questionnaires took most of our rehearsal time, but we still also enjoyed games like Center and The Sun Shines On which got us moving and laughing.
Our adult ensemble is growing by the second! We’re up to 12 actors this session, including Sam & Peter, who have moved up from the young adult ensemble, and Matt who is brand new with us this term. Together, we worked through several games like Stage Pictures, What are You Doing?, and This is Not a Chair. These help us use our imaginations, make quick decisions, and say “yes” to each other’s ideas. We put these skills to the test with a 2 person improvisation exercise. Actors pulled the first line of a scene out of a hat (e.g. “We are definitely lost”, “Oh no, it’s raining”, “It’s such a beautiful day.”) and with their partner had to develop a short scene based on that line. Our actors battled giant spiders, hid under trees, went on scenic picnics, and had lots of movie snacks! These improvisation skills will come in handy next week as we start to develop stories about some special objects.
We’re so excited to see what our teams create this fall! This semester, we have a mix of long-time program veterans alongside SIX new actors and FIVE new facilitators. Their names are marked with an asterisk (*) below. Watch for our spotlight blog posts to introducing these new friends.
Actors: Anna, Claire, Christian, Lucy, Sandia, Maggie*, Matthew*, Ryan*, Sophie*
Teaching Artists: Kaylie & Emma
Facilitators: Rosie, Nate, Beth, Shannon, Mary F, Mary R.*, Kate*
Actors: Colin*, Marissa, Alena, Jack, Samuel, Natalia, Mila, Maria, Lucas
Teaching Artists: Sean & Braden
Facilitators: Susan, Lindsay, Emma, Chelsea, Lauren*, Lawrence, Katie, Kiaran*
Actors: Ben, Marty, Matt D.*, Peter*, Andrew, Emily K, Matthew L., Emily L, Maddi, Justice, Sam R*, Jake
Teaching Artists: Katie & Lawrence
Facilitators: Arin, Nette, Aaron, Ben*, Claire, Kara
When are the shows?
We know this is the big question on everyone’s mind! We’re not ready to announce yet, but sign up for our newsletter to be the first to know when we announce our show dates and locations for our December performances. Newsletter subscribers also get first dibs on ticket sales, and extra behind the scenes content!