Wednesday, 9 December 2009


We did our last dress rehearsal in 5 different set. We received much more positive feedback and saw most of the stories and we received the rota for tomorrow.

I was much more confident and happy with piece. I did feel nervous about Saturday and Sunday as I felt we'd been thrown in at the deep end.

In the theatre craft workshop on Wednesday I receivede a talk on stage management and lighting which I found helpful.
I've been up to my ears in rehearsals so I've not been to the theatre in weeks.

Wednesday, 2 December 2009



We did a dress rehearsal of our story telling pieces and gave feedback. We saw all the stories in their rooms and we were all in our costumes. I found everyone's stories to be very impressive as everyone has a different way of telling stories that they brought to the dress rehearsal.


I felt really bad as if I'd let my group down by forgetting my story because I let my nerves overtake me and I know and will rehearse thoroughly so I'm not crap on Friday.


Siobhan and Megan's musical presentation was impressive with the use of puppets. Also today we had workshops at the London Colliseum on many things including stage management and lighting which is what I want to do as a career in the future so I found it useful, impressive and very informative. Eyndia's talk on PR was really inspiring as it made me learn about social media and all these things I didn't know about.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009


We played keeper of the keys. This is a game where there is one person blindfolded in the middle with a set of keys placed beneath them and someone has to quietly walk around the circle and then try to grab the keys. The keeper has to try to detect and point out where they are based on hearing- was very hard. We also played wink murder and monster. We focused on characterisation as we asked questions to ourselves based on our character to do with scenery and surrounding, age, name, mood etc.. We then practiced the stories ourselves trying to perfect our charaterisation and put an apt voice to our character. We then got into pairs and directed and acted and listened to our stories. We focused on bringing the character and story to life and trying to make it as interesting as possible. We then did hotseating for the Q and A group who have Mrs Claus and Nicky Claus and we asked a range of questions from childish to adult. I found it so funny and successful as they stayed in character throughout the piece.

I feel a bit concerned about the face painting because I can do face painting but are we going to practice? Are there any themes? I am happy to say that I finally feel confident about my made up stories.

The Lion King lecture on Monday was really interesting to dance, sing and act. It made me even more want to become a stage manager on a show like this as I know it would be challenging but it is my dream job.



We went into the basement of Ham House to see and decide where to perform our stories. We practiced saying stories in performance mode. I decided to tell stories roaming around the basement as my stories are short. I also decided to use my made up stories rather than learn a long story I couldn't remember that I didn't like. We were told about costume that we've got to bring in for next week and we got told that we had to learn our stories for next week


Finally I feel kind of ready for the christmas events. I felt bad for Mark as I hadn't learnt my story but I feel so confident about my stories.


To be honest I've been so busy with my head in books researching or typing out essays I've not had time to become inspired by anything significant.

Wednesday, 18 November 2009



This was another lesson we organized ourselves. We started again by playing games such as Prisoner .v. Guard which is based on quick reflex actions as you've got to get away from the chairs that are positioned in a circle before the guards who are standing behind the chairs touch you. This was a fun start to the lesson. We then did a vocal warm up which consisted of siren sounds and tongue twisters. This made me feel like I was ready to perform my piece. We then got into pairs and listened to each other's stories which we had been told to learn. I was the actor being directed. I was told to live the part and really empathize with my character. I found this a very effective way to rehearse as it was not so nerve wracking. We then observed people perform their different stories. I was very impressed with the characterisation and effort of the stories of people. It made me feel very hopeful. As for Frank- what can I say. What a talented person. He was so helpful and he gave me tips on how to perform and tell stories through his body language and vocal tones.

I've found it really hard to learn my story and I feel I stutter and stumble and am not confident with myself reading my story as I don't know it well enough and believe me I've tried so hard and I will keep trying because I'm no slacker and would like to tell my story. I'm stressed and excited at the same time because of the time issues and the Christmas events at Ham House.

I stutter and stumble and am a nervous wreck when reading out my story so I've got an idea that my story would sound better coming from someone who is more confident. This is not me being lazy. It's a case of my memory being overloaded. I'm going to write a magical story so it would be easy to remember as I've written it. What do people think anyways?



We played games such as the A...B...C... game where in pairs you start a conversation beginning with the letter A. Then every sentence you go through the alphabet. The game was better and more interesting if one acted out the situations and didn't think solely about it. We played the atmosphere game where two people went out the room and we picked an emotion and tried to make them feel that emotion through our visceral subtle responses.

We then took our plays and read them to someone and to groups. We then decided to choose one story we liked and the story teller of that particular story. The story tellers created characters suitable for the role of the narrators and invited us i to their atmosphere they had created and told their stories in character like we would be doing at christmas in the house. We went from one person to another person and I found this method of story telling very effective and made me feel child-like.


I've felt I've chosen a complex story and don't know if I'll be able to learn it. There is so much work in for the next few weeks. Stress....stress...stress. Aaaarrggghhh!!!!!!!!!! Although I do feel very excited about Ham House as the days draw nearer.


I would really like to invite people into the house in character. For example maids as in mine, Chantelle's and Karina's performance. It would make the house feel alive and we can add a sense of comedy to it.
I also would like to have a variety of stories so we can pick and choose which ones we like.

11th November 2009

Number 1. My mind is a blank with what we did in the last Friday session on the 6th November hence why I've skipped a week. Too much work and my brain is getting fried.

This was a lesson set up by ourselves as we need extra time for work. This was more of a meeting than a rehearsal to discuss our progress and future plans. We played games such as cat and mouse ( the mouse has to join and link with people before he gets caught) and monster (prevent monster from getting empty chair as you all play as a team to try and stop the monster from sitting down). This relaxed me and was a fun element to the lecture. We discussed lots of marketing opportunities. For example late night Teddington to make our christmas events known to the public. We were asked to get stories for Friday based on either christmas or winter. Also Mark mentioned the reminiscence theatre project which I would still be very interested in.

I finally feel more relaxed as we are now getting some work done for the Christmas events and I'm feeling confident about the DIC Christmas festivities.


I had the idea of using old unknown fairy tales as a basis for our winter/christmas stories. We could make them magical by adapting them.
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.An absolutely amazing book. I recommend you all to read it as people can learn so many things from the book.

review of the great extension

‘The Great Extension’ – a review

Hassan, a second generation Turk, wakes up one morning with a hangover but the accompanying headache isn’t to do with the noise from his builder doing an extension, but the fact he had got married the previous day, in alcoholic blackout, to a Muslim beauty named Jamillia. His problems are compounded by the arrival of her disapproving family members in the guise of her irate father, a very protective brother and a sister (concealed in full Muslim dress with only her eyes on show). A further complication is added by the complaints about the building works from his reactionary neighbour, the very English Mr Brown, as well as the arrival of Hassan’s materialistic and insensitive Turkish father accompanied by his alcoholic wife, Hassan’s suffering mother. Throw in a transsexual houseboy and a black policeman, trained in diversity training but not in spotting a corpse, and we have a perfect recipe for this amusing and intelligent farce.
Written by Cosh Omar, who also plays the lead role as Hassan, this challenging farce tackles the hypocrisy inherent in not just the Islamic faith but in all religions. Despite the frequent references to the Koran and other ‘spiritual’ literature on Hassan’s bookshelf, the characters seem to be drawn to the selfish material life manifested in property ownership and driving Mercedes cars. Omar comically deals with the issues of multiculturalism, racism, faith, Judo-Islamic conflict, and sexuality with the use of stereotyped characters in an amusing but inoffensive manner. The multi-ethnic audience laughed at these images and comments as they probably identified with these stereotyped characters. The acting was convincing and very visual, particularly from the actress playing the Muslim sister who used her eyes and voice, to good and comical effect.
I felt the last scene with the houseboy meeting a new boyfriend seemed superfluous and the attempted murder of Mr Brown didn’t seem in keeping with a comedy that was, in a way, celebrating multicultural London.
Overall, this was an enjoyable and thought provoking production and well worth the trip across London to Stratford East. Stratford East’s tradition as a community theatre is well served by this production with its excellent cast of eccentric and extreme characters that maintain an individuality that outweighs the stereotyping they represent. As I read in one review, the ‘themes are challenging and the performances, under Kerry Michael’s direction, are slick in this roller coaster of a ride, full of unseen twists and turns, that keeps us on our toes and wildly amused’.

Sarah Clopet

10th November 2009

Friday, 6 November 2009

6th lesson 30/11/09


We were shown the rest of the storytelling pieces. I was impressed by Emily's and Siobhan's use of costume.
We discussed about christmas stories. We decided to do winter stories at christmas as it would set the atmosphere.
We went on a behind the scenes tour to places not open to the public. It was very interesting to see the space the men servants lived in relation to the women servants. I thought it was sad that so many rooms that so many rooms aren't available to the public because of storage space and I feel these places should be open to the public and included in the tours to the public as in my personal opinion the places and new discoveries made the house feel very alive. For example the tour guides read articles of servants living there and their stories. This gave me a real sense of their lifestyle. i enjoyed the tour as the stories were interesting and we went to places we didn't even know were there.

I feel excited about the christmas project as it gradually gets nearer and nearer and I'm certain our company will pull all the stops out and make the weekends a success.
I feel like I know the house inside out and it has a real sense of life to me.
I'm so aware that we are going to have to work very hard and do extra rehearsals and lectures if we want our pieces to be successful and I'm not going to lie I'm quite worried about the amount of work and the time factor but I know we can and will be a success.
At the moment, I've only just realised how much work and rehearsals I'm going to have in the next month. Its crazy. I feel like work is getting on top of me and I feel very stressed and worried as there is so much to do and not enough time but I'm a hard worker and I'll get there. Sorry for the negativity guys. I promise I won't always be like this. It's 1:15am on a Friday night. I should be out not doing work.


I would really like to make the audiences at christmas feel that the place is alive and has been lived in through the use of props and costume if possible but its important also to focus on family fun mainly and history a bit.
I feel inspired by the book I've just read called The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Hadden. I recommend it as I couldn't put it down. Its about a 15 year old boy's life who has Asperger's syndrome which is a form of Autism and it has inspired me because I would like to work with disabled or autistic children as I feel it could be very rewarding and uplifting and it could help in my other lectures as well.
I feel like I have to do something with reminiscence theatre as dementia is very personal to me and I feel I should give something back and work and interact with people who have dementia.

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

23rd October 2009

Interesting talk on filming at Ham House by Harvey Edgington.
Went to filming cupboard to see what available to protect various pieces of furniture if filming in house.
Found out what needed protection.
Went into Great Hall to see what needed protection there if filming.
Asked about using films and techniques including smoke in house.
Listened and observed people's storytelling pieces.
Performed own story telling pieces.


Story telling piece was a success - hope so. Was for adults really and not children.
Would really like to use film as method of production in DIC projects in future.
Think we've got some great ideas. Ben's story of ill tempered snowman come to mind but are lots of successful stories. It's just a case of dramatizing them.


Had an idea of theme based rooms - three rooms, three things or more to do with Christmas.Think that would be quite successful. What do you all think?
Really like idea of combining live theatre and recorded clips - would be eye catching, draw audience in. What do you all think?

Monday, 19 October 2009

what we did in lesson 16/10/09

An interesting talk about history of National Trust.
Garden Tour - beautiful, obviously hard to maintain.
Watched performance of "The Owl and The Pussy Cat". Zoe and Jennie gone to a lot of effort. Had used and made props. Used costumes - good example. Very impressive and effective story telling method especially for children.


Should be coming up with ideas but despite trying can't think of many at the moment. Don't know why. I feel like I'm lazy and letting the group down but my brain is just a blank and I try to add on to other people's ideas.
Also feel like we have been given so much to do in so little time that we need to get started soon otherwise will not have a performance ready so I feel like we've got to start working.


Thought of using forum theatre getting the children and adults involved so part of the action and not get bored.
Also adapting fairy tales to make them modern and Christmas like.
Should use props and costumes as visually attractive.
Really want to use the gardens in summer when its warmer and create some physical theatre for audience as felt inspired by Paul's version of 4:48 Psychosis.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

what we did in lesson 9th October 2009

Given lot of e-mails - work offers with different communities- very exciting.
Chose company manager and deputy .
Toured whole of Ham House. Differences between servant's quarters and aristocracy's parts interesting. Also finding out more about house's history.
Good and worthwhile to be able to assess and evaluate tours.
Discussed possibilities within christmas event- i.e. what going to do.

Ham House - bit overwhelming but good to know everything about house because of Christmas project.
Very excited but calm about Christmas project and reminiscence theatre.
Feel know what I've got to do in terms of process of creating Christmas project

Power of Yes really made me angry as I finally understood the financial situation we are in due to my dad explaining it because for someone who doesn't understand first thing about finance it may as well be alien to me.
Thorpe Park inspires me as I'm working at Thorpe Park for fright nights - inspired by hard work and creativity and organisation that goes into the making and running of these events by all entertainments team.
University lectures especially Playback as would use our senses to create physical performances.

The Power of Yes

‘The Power of Yes’ - David Hare – a few notes
(seen at The National Theatre’- 8th October 2009)


Powerful, eco-political drama about causes, events and consequences of so called ‘Credit Crunch’ that ended in the recent downfall or near downfall of capitalism. Hare explains how over lending of banks to customers unable to repay loans resulted in banks being without money to further finance businesses and would-be home buyers. This further led to economic recession and rise in business bankruptcy and unemployment.

Hare points finger at greedy, arrogant bankers like Fred Goodwin of Royal Bank of Scotland but also at the government for failing to regulate banks. Play uses views of key bankers, academics and financial journalists to reveal facts of this colossal failure of banking system.


Hare writes himself into the play as a researcher directing questions to key financiers, government officials at the Financial Services Association as well as academics, to unfold the facts of the collapse of banking system. No dialogue between characters and all information comes from Hare’s interviews with these key characters. This is a very efficient and effective way of sharing the information with audience.

Economic and financial jargon unavoidable but certain terms such as sub-prime markets were explained at key points in story. Use of graphics revealing names of ‘Northern Rock’ and photos of Goodwin and others, assisted in conveying the potentially difficult subject matter to audience.


1) Arrogant, greedy and incompetent bankers have got a lot to answer for
2) National government and departments such as FSA also to blame for lack of regulation
3) Markets can fail and innocent people not bankers pay price

without interval too long
2) Dialogue too hard to follow. People without background understanding of financial economics might find difficult to grasp

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

2nd October 2009- what we did in lecture

what we did in lecture

Ham House Georg gave us House's history.
Discussed Christmas events and open days.
Thought about what, when, how, how long etc.
Georg said would accept all suggestions - nice he's so open.
Told to go away and think about project ideas.
Thought of lots of communities, different types and how we came to be in them.
Toured gardens- each group focused on a specific spot, which interested them. Improvised and observed history of Ham House scenarios. Fun seeing house for first time.

No idea where to start but have lots of random ideas for Christmas project,
Started to think about communities and different types.
Feel really happy with this course but worried because seems a lot of work.
Today assessment was made much clearer.
Feel bit stuck whereto start ideas process as don't want to make a fool of myself on Friday by just saying all these non- connected ideas.


Not been to Ham House before - was taken in by magnificence and size.

Inspired by a lot of my university lectures this week.

Last week's physical approaches to playtext had a huge impact - introduced me to new form of creating physical theatre, playback. Allowed me to go through happiness and sadness at the same time.

Musical lecture amazing - I found out so many things about many musicals that I didn't know before and great presentations !!!!

25th September 2009- what we did in the first lecture

lecture description

Discussed Ham House partnership.
Looked over the course outline and what we're doing this semester.
Discussed practical assessment plus blogs and best way to do them. Argghhh!!!! I'm so scared - haven't done before.
Ensured knew everything about professional blogs - seems hard work!!!
Looked at different ways and areas of assessment in practical and written category.


Really excited about course - lots of different opportunities.#
But lot of work so I'm getting started now.
Scared to start blog as don't know what to write.
Felt today my brain would explode - so much information to be absorbed and taken in - not good!!
Realised lots of ways to be assessed but all seemed a bit vague at first.
Could achieve lot of new things I've not tried before so I am looking forward to it.
Really happy with everyone in class. Work really well together and are very close.


Read a lot of plays this week.Sarah Kane's Blasted had most impact - horrific and quite disgusting.
4:48 Sarah Kane's Psychosis had impact - deemed her suicide play as her last.
Been working in my community theatre for past 3 weeks. Good to know length people will go to volunteering. Felt great experience meeting different talented people and learning different skills.