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AS and A Level: Plays

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  • Peer Reviewed essays 2
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  1. Exploration of Drama & Theatre Within Blood Wedding & The Woman Before

    With the play seamlessly flowing from present to past and future, the time changes are made easier to understand with placards held at the start of each scene, something Brecht championed in the theatre circle. This ensured that the audience remained focused on the action rather than spending time trying to work out where the action was taking place on the timeline. I believe the main difference between the two plays is the style of writing. "The Woman Before" is very naturalistic and follows the ebbs and flows of natural language whereas "Blood Wedding" is a lot more surreal, with characters that symbolise death etc.

    • Word count: 3027
  2. Plot for The Crucible

    Both Mary Warren and Mercy leave as they are both frightened of Mr Proctor. When they leave Abigail and Mr Proctor start talking about their love affair in which proctor starts to denies everything and act like nothing is going on whilst Abigail starts to loose it as she feels mad that he does not want to love her anymore. Betty starts wailing and Abigail starts screaming for Parris. Parris enters and he calls for the nurse and Rebecca and Giles Corey enter. Rebecca tells them that Betty is fine and will wake in time and also tells Parris that when Revered Hale comes that he should send him home as he should not be looking for spirits as it's only going to course more problems.

    • Word count: 3474
  3. Language of Performing Arts

    Dynamics, physicality and timbre worked together in the drama piece when Zainab uses physicality to shake her hands in the air to show frustration, the dynamics of the movement are strong to convey the frustration further and the timbre of her voice is harsh and rough to reinforce frustration and communicate anger. Dynamics, rhythm and characterisation are another example of links I found. The three elements all relate to how something is done, whether it is lightly, quickly or loudly.

    • Word count: 3073
  4. My drama script

    Mrs Wilson: Nah but she's full of herself, she thinks she's got everything, I've got everything, just that I don't want them Audience: Yeah right! Mrs Phillips comes to the kitchen. Lucy: Mum you know what, just shut up, yeah, cos if you have everything, why are we here depending on someone else then, why are we not in our own house, huh? Yeah no answers, so just shut up. Mrs Phillips: Hey calm down, what is going on? Mrs Wilson: Fuck off man; stop sticking your nose in people's business.

    • Word count: 5806
  5. What means does Alan Bennett use to help us to understand the truth about Lesley in Her Big Chance?

    Bennett's early years were spent during World War Two. This harsh upbringing means he would have encountered shortages, caution, great fear and perhaps at times boredom. The audience will notice that young Lesley's life in the beginning is merriment and over exaggerated. This could represent what Bennett's childhood lacked, and the things he desperately wanted in his younger years. Bennett says at the begging of talking heads "he has met many Lesley's", evoking the idea that the monologues are semi-auto biographies. The monologues were cheap to produce. During the 80s the BBC was cutting back their drama budget; therefore Talking Heads was the perfect series to put on air.

    • Word count: 3618
  6. What do we learn about New York and the programmes themselves through the openings of 'The Sopranos' and 'Sex in the City'?

    The actors chose to represent the roles are both perfect examples of the stereotypical characters they play. For example, 'Tony Soprano' (played by James Gandolfini) is the typical gangster. He has the perfect stance and appearance, and uses props to his advantage in signifying ideas to the audience. 'Carrie Bradshaw' (played by Sarah Jessica Parker) also does this, but for an entirely different typecast. Even though both of these shows are set in New York, each represents and displays an entirely different atmosphere and ambiance for both districts of the city, evoking very different thoughts and feelings.

    • Word count: 3751
  7. Deconstruct an opening sequence (10-15 mins max) from a Television Genre of your choice. The opening scene I have chosen to deconstruct is the first episode of '24 Day 2', which is the second series in this hit TV show.

    This information is suggesting to us that what we are seeing is happening in real time and creates verisimilitude for the audience. This is also backed up by the fact that the show is called '24' and then it gives us a time, all linking in with the idea that the show is over one day/24 hours. This information can also be perceived from the name/title itself. Even the font they use for the numbering of 24 is designed to look like that of an everyday digital time piece (clock radio, digital watch, clock on a VCR)

    • Word count: 3212
  8. How does Bennett develop the audience's response to Muriel and her family in 'Soldiering on'?

    girl, that's the coward's way out,' this is where we see Bennett already building on the fact that Muriel is going to keep a 'stiff upper lip' and be bravely living on her own without Ralph. Muriel likes to keep herself busy as we can see nearing the end of section two; 'I'd thought I'd go into the library' but in keeping herself busy she is still reminiscing about Ralph, even though she doesn't show in herself it shows in her actions; 'find me something on bereavement' referring to a leaflet to see how to cope, it shows a weak

    • Word count: 3290
  9. How does the Director encourage the audience to feel sympathy for Derek and his family?

    This is one of the many ways the director used to create sympathy for Bentley and his family. Colour is also used to annotate which characters should be sympathised with and which the audience should be wary of. The audience grows accustomed to the sight of gold in the scenes with the family, which are generally brightly lit to try to welcome the audience in, as though it were welcoming and warm, and also the stark contrast of the harsh darkness of the gang scenes. The first scene shown to the audience is that of war. The scene starts in total anarchy, amongst the blitz and destruction.

    • Word count: 4228
  10. "In 'Psycho' how has Alfred Hitchcock created tension throughout the film and what effect does it have on us as viewers

    Mirrors and reflections in windows are a device that Hitchcock uses to symbolize split personality. There is a shot of Marion in the office, holding the money and deciding what to do with it. We see her reflection in the mirror, creating two Marion's. One is the innocent ordinary secretary that would not commit a crime. The other is the darker side of Marion that would steal the $40,000. Another shot of Marion and her reflection in a mirror is at the reception desk of the motel. On one side of her, we see her bag with the newspaper she is carrying, and in the reflection, we see the envelope of money she has stolen, showing her corrupt side.

    • Word count: 3199
  11. The original stimulus to our original ideas was the way in which children of different religions and races unite to create a harmonious society within our school. We discussed the situation within a small area, such as a school

    Sophocles' Antigone was inspiring in the sense we were able to view alternative ways in which to depict the story of a heroine who is treated badly for her beliefs. Both Sophocles' Antigone and Chekhov's Three Sisters inspired the use of symbolism. We have incorporated symbolism into our production with the use of costume. The costumes in the ancient Greek theatre have a symbolic significance in the way the production is understood. The most essential part of their disguise was the mask, which inspired the use of the headscarf and masks within our piece.

    • Word count: 3495
  12. In a 1963 interview, following the phenomenal success of "Psycho" Hitchcock agreed with his interviewer that he was "really directing the audience more than the actors!" How does Hitchcock manipulate his audience in "Psycho"?

    screen rapidly slash from unpredictable heights to cover small specks of distorted white parts, turning out to be tips and tails of letters, hinting at the word "PSYCHO". The unpredictable heights reflect the unpredictability of the plot. The horizontal lines across the screen could possibly look like a window-blind, perhaps suggesting voyeurism, referring to Norman Bates later in the film secretly spying on Marion from his office, or the blinds that the camera is soon to be directed through. Or these slashing lines could all be related to the stabbing scenes: not only was the same music used but also the same atmosphere generated amongst the audience.

    • Word count: 3914
  13. Community Performance project.

    Our piece had to be performed outdoors due to lack of space and danger of damaging the inside of the house, this meant wrapping up warm, the sub-zero temperatures of a wet February evening were not really the ideal conditions for a performance! Ideas were flowing for the dance and musical aspects so we had to develop more on the acting front. We wanted to include more characters so the idea came about to include the children of the Whitgreave family to introduce the audience to the King upon his arrival.

    • Word count: 3066
  14. Being "Lost" in Lost has multiple meanings. Lost by the physical meaning, literally means what the premise of the series is, group of survivors from a plane crash lost on an uncharted island. It could also be lost in terms of

    The pilot episode set up a few binary opposites, which then change as the direction of the series changes. As many people on the island you do not know their identity and if they are a threat or not. If you were to take the meaning of the word lost literally for the TV series that is true in terms of where the characters are and what the audience feel. This is a feeling of not knowing where you are, generated by the series in its narrative. Lost is in anti narrative it starts with the Jack waking up on an island in the midst of a plane crash with no explanation why he came to be there.

    • Word count: 4601
  15. Our community project was to create a performance that would appeal to the local community, in our case, Great Missenden.

    These discussions lead us to think about our own ambitions and dreams, as children, and how alike they were to some of Roahl Dahl's stories. We concluded that the theme of "children's dreams" would provide a good basis for our piece. Each episode could become a different dream and each dream could be presented using a different performance technique, to add variety. As we could no longer remember in enough detail our child hood dreams we visited the local middle school, where we interviewed group of thirty 8-9 year olds.

    • Word count: 3138
  16. Performance Studies: Community Project Coursework

    During our dance workshops, we improvised with the idea of hide and seek, by hiding behind inanimate objects, whilst using stylised movements, an element we had developed from our drama workshops. Adding torches and using light to produce movement explored this idea further. Following them with our bodies enabled us to use different levels and emphasised the fact that we were seeking for something. On the music side of proceedings we had the idea of using popular Renaissance music around the time of King Charles, as genre of our song.

    • Word count: 3191

    My topic in which to research was death and how it affects old age people. We then brought together each individuals research piece and discussed ways in which to portray these issues in our play. In the play we also wanted to demonstrate elderly people's thoughts on society and the effect media have on them. In order to do this we had to talk to the elderly people personally. So we went to the Darby and Joan club which was down the street from my school where we got the chance to interview a number of elderly people and also observed their physicality and how they communicate amongst themselves.

    • Word count: 8611
  18. Research into drama productions Analysis of a range of drama productions We have been asked by dovetail studios that have been awarded a grant by the lottery commission

    We also had the advantage of the drama teacher coming in and holding a workshop where in he made us understand and realize what the script demanded of us. He even went to the extent in telling us how their roles were going to fall into place and what we should expect as the final material. Following this in our media class with Ray being around gave us the opportunity in enacting different roles i.e. director / cinematography / actors, which gave us the understanding of what each area deals with and we got the feel of these different areas.

    • Word count: 3295
  19. For our A2 brief we have to film a 5 minute section of a television documentary. we decided to go with the idea of doing a one about Rude Boys which is equivalent to the modern term Street Gang.

    Each student advertised their idea for the brief to the rest of the class with the aim to get into groups of 3 and 4 with similar ideas. After hearing each member in my group ideas about the subject of our documentary, we decided to go with the idea of doing a one about "Rude Boys" which is equivalent to the modern term Street Gang. We chose this simply because we were all interested in it and had a rough idea of what the documentary would be about as a whole.

    • Word count: 4855
  20. Discuss why mass-production became the dominant form of production in the US and Great Britain in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

    Agricultural workers created enough food to satisfy themselves and perhaps a small amount to sell in local markets. Within manufacturing, technology was primitive and consequently skilled labourers were strongly depended upon to create goods. The work was highly labour intensive, employees worked on a product from start to finish thus goods were produced slowly and in small numbers. This changed during the late 19th century however as a number of industries were subject to technological innovations, and these breakthroughs made it possible to use machinery instead of labour to produce a huge flow of goods.2 The innovations in machinery did

    • Word count: 3291
  21. Drama Coursework: Absurdism Freeze Frames We used freeze frames in drama to create many absurd scenarios

    I'm thinking, "This is very weird" and "what's happening here". Freeze frames help to create an atmosphere. It creates tension and other emotions. Mime: There are two types of mime: * Acting without dialogue or sound. But relying on action, facial expressions and body expressions. * Acting with sound and dialogue but without the use of props. We used mime with no sound to a rhythm. We did every day chores, like putting your books in your bag or looking for your house key to four different actions or positions.

    • Word count: 3634
  22. For my essay I am comparing two different types of TV drama; 'Hustle' which is a 'Series Drama' and 'Lost' which is a 'Serial Drama'. Hustle is shown on BBC1 and the Hallmark Channel weekly

    It's based around the same characters and normally the same setting. The outcome is always the same, pure comedy. A good example of this would be 'The Office'. For my essay I am comparing two different types of TV drama; 'Hustle' which is a 'Series Drama' and 'Lost' which is a 'Serial Drama'. Hustle is shown on BBC1 and the Hallmark Channel weekly. It is based around a group of con-artists which are very experienced in the 'long con' which means conning for large sums of money, the show is very clever and I believe this is one of it's major appeals.

    • Word count: 4417
  23. PerformanceIn performance there are three stages of development when creating a performance piece with the first being Improvisation

    This was particularly important for us when developing our final combined piece (stimuli for my combined piece was "Years Ago" were discarded. One of the ideas that we later dropped was for the main character, to continuously be innocent/trustworthy; this idea wasn't used due the fact we wanted to add contrast in the piece. However one of the initial ideas that we did use for use for the final piece was not to show the change of scenes with major alterations to the set, and to have only one prop (lit match - focus point for the audience)

    • Word count: 3281
  24. 'Bowling for Columbine', directed by Michael Moore, deals with the problems of gun crime in America.

    They are also trust-worthy as they have been cut out from newspaper reports and are in black and white which portrays that the sources are more dependable and authentic. The use of repetition such as 'assassination' and 'dictator' evokes negative images within the audience's mind. The word 'dictator' will immediately cause the audience to think about Nazi Germany and the tyranny they brought upon the world. Moore uses this to his advantage as the first scenes show a marching army that has been 'installed by US.'

    • Word count: 3258
  25. The stimulus we were given to look at was the play 'Too Much Punch for Judy', written in 1987 by British playwright, Mark Wheeller. Mark Wheeller

    The original script ended there, Judy had been fined �250 and was banned from driving for eighteen months. The script was further revised with another tragic accident involving Judy. This time Judy was involved in a car crash, not only with alcohol in her system but with traces of cannabis in her bloodstream. Judy had crashed into another car killing the young woman driver, only a mile from Scratch Bridge. Judy was sentenced to serve five years in prison and banned from driving for ten years from the date of her trial as well as having to retake her driving test before she drives again.

    • Word count: 12476

Conclusion analysis

Good conclusions usually refer back to the question or title and address it directly - for example by using key words from the title.
How well do you think these conclusions address the title or question? Answering these questions should help you find out.

  1. Do they use key words from the title or question?
  2. Do they answer the question directly?
  3. Can you work out the question or title just by reading the conclusion?
  • "Citizen Kane is often called the greatest film ever made. With close examination of the opening scenes, discuss the significant artistic features and cinematic techniques that led to this response."

    "A different example of Welles' mise-en-shot having great effect is the use of single shots from one angle for extended periods of time. This is a technique rarely employed in modern films, with directors preferring to jump to different angles frequently, showing as much as possible in a different way. This can feel strange to a modern viewer, and I found myself watching some of the interview scenes especially, just waiting for the camera to change, even just for a close-up, but it rarely does. A scene from the newsreel gives a good overall impression of the film. When Thatcher is shown calling Kane a communist, a union leader declares him a fascist, and Kane refers to himself as "One thing only- an American." These different views of Kane are symbolic of the way we only get what people who knew him thought of him, and as the newsreel director said, "what he did." We never find out the real truth, only other people's views, and although clues are given (after all, not many would believe that this cold businessman would so fondly keep his childhood sledge) we never really know the man himself. Michael Whiteman"

  • Compare the Opening Scenes of the Two Film Versions of Lord of the Flies

    "In my opinion the modern film version of 'Lord of the Flies' is the most effective. I feel this way because firstly it is in colour which to me provides a clearer picture and gives a better atmosphere as you can see the change in lighting. And also the fact that not as much information was given makes the audience feel more intrigued as to what is happening. The music in the modern version was a lot more smoother in the sense that it seemed to fit better, and it wasn't just like a series of sounds put together unlike in the first film. Both directors interpreted the novel in their own way and came out with virtually totally different beginnings, showing the change of the way of thinking from the early sixties to the late eighties when the modern version was produced."

  • Analyse 'drugs the facts' and 'The Score,' looking at how genres have been used and subverted in order to attract specific target audiences. How effective is this?

    "In conclusion I think that both drugs leaflets are to an extent effective at using and subverting genres in order to attract a specific target audience. However I feel that 'The Score' was the most successful at attracting a specific target audience through its use of several borrowed generic features found in teenage magazines, the Internet, scientific text books, and various others."

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