Monologues, physical theater, clowns, masks, voice development, improvisation, circus and more.
Improvisation, or improv, is a form of live theater in which the plot, characters and dialogue of a game, scene or story are made up in the moment. Often improvisers will take a suggestion from the audience, or draw on some other source of inspiration to get started. Improvisational theater exists in performance as a range of styles of improvisational comedy as well as some non-comedic theatrical performances.
Improvisational techniques are used extensively in our syllabus to train the young youth for stage, film and television and are an important part of the rehearsal process. However, the skills and processes of improvisation are used outside of the context of performing arts as well. In our school it is used as an educational tool and as a way to develop communication skills, creative problem solving and supportive team-work abilities that are used by improvisational, ensemble players. Improvisation is sometimes used in psychotherapy as a tool to gain insight into a person's thoughts, feelings and relationships.
Monologues and character analysis
Tchekov, Tennesey Williams, Hanokh Levin and Molière are amongst the play writers we perform, analyze and incarnate during our lessons. In our rehearsal room there is a library with a lot of plays. Each student is stimulated to read and choose a character he relates to or that touches him and he would like to perform. In this course we work on theatrical conflict, both interior and exterior, on different points of view of characters, playing someone who is completely different than you and the most important tool we work on is- subtext- knowing that what we say is not always what we mean. In many plays playwrights use the subtext to underline the complexity and defense mechanism of their characters; once we emphasize this in class the students get a tool for life.
Physical theater is a genre of theatrical performance that pursues storytelling through primarily physical means. Several performance traditions all describe themselves as "physical theater", but the unifying aspect is a reliance on physical motion of the performers rather than, or combined with, text to convey the story. In essence, you talk through hand gestures, body language, thought track and many more physical features.
In our project, the youth study to express his feelings through masks, dance, emotional gestures, mimics, pantomime and more. This is also a way to gain self-confidence and work on body representation on stage and in life. Through this class the youth realizes that theater, just like personal connection, goes further than words.
Commedia de l’arte
Commedia dell’arte is a form of theater characterized by masked “types,” which began in Italy in the 16th century and was responsible for the advent of the actresses and improvised performances based on sketches or scenarios. The closest translation of the name is “comedy of craft.
In this course the youth studies to express his feeling through prototypical characters, their absurdity, humor, happiness and bitterness, which they reflect upon the reality and their own character and its weakness. By emphasizing those prototypes the youth understand what certain characteristics might look like and cause. Humor and corporal skills are major factors in this formation which bring to life various human behaviors and teaches us a lot about the human spirit through mask, humor and body gestures.
Singing and voice development
Great orators have the power to inspire the world. They lead with a strong presence and a confident voice that commands attention.
How you speak determines how people respond to you. Not just women you are interested in, but friends, strangers, employers, and everyone you come in contact with. In this lesson the youth learn the various layers of their voice and the interpretation of words. They learn to recognize the meaning of words and the use of it on stage. They learn that one voice may have many layers as well as how to use the voice correctly onstage in order for it to reach the entire audience. They can use this skill in everyday life in order to get people’s attention on different subjects. This is an important skill towards self-confidence and understanding of the human voice and its variety.
Costume Design & Makeup
In this course, the youth learn the history of costumes in theater. They are taught how fabric can be used to transmit a statement, an emotion or a character’s personality. Our youth learn plays from the 16th century to today, as well as how to design costumes by era, taking under consideration the restrictions and possibilities of the specific era they are trying to capture. Costume designing is also a way to handle body image issues in a positive way: by using textures, fabrics and making decisions on how the actor will appear on stage, what to emphasize in him and therefore in themselves. In Make up classes we go through all periods as well, learning how to make up various theater domains such as Kabuki theater, renaissance, absurd and much more.
In this course, our youth, with Alma Ganiher’s guidance (a well known screen and play writer), are taught how to construct a play. The youth learn how to incorporate conflict, create dialogues, and build characters in their writing. Their first assignment is a monologue, then a dialogue with the goal that by the end of the course the youth will write an entire play that will be performed by the acting class at the end of the year.