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  • Level: GCSE
  • Subject: Drama
  • Word count: 3352

GCSE Drama: Summative Task: Designer Option

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Introduction I will be exploring the role of a designer in the play 'Romeo & Juliet' by William Shakespeare. The play is set in China but the storyline is slightly different although the ending is the same as in all tragedies. This is because of designing purposes as this will enable me to use different types of designs in costumes, the set etc and it will also fit in with the Chinese cultures and general circumstances which were very different to Shakespeare's Elizabethan setting. The Capulets are the governing body of China and rule the country The Montagues are British settlers who have, like many times in history, tried to conquer China. The prince is the governor of the French army who successfully conquered China before the English did. Despite hat, he has still given Capulet, the emperor of China, the responsibility of running the Chinese empire. All these changes will influence the design of the costumes as well as the set. The differences in make-up will be vast and will be clearly visible between the English and Chinese characters. Set Design I chose a rotating stage on which to put my set and created a set in which all of the four sides would act as a background in order to accommodate the scenes. The idea came from 'Our House' by John Godber, where the set is hanging from the ceiling and the stage is rotatable which allows for quick scene changes and quick set changes. Two sides of the set show the Capulets' house with the balcony to accommodate act two scene two (the famous balcony scene where Romeo and Juliet meet) and act three scene five (the scene that starts with Romeo leaving the town after spending a night with Juliet and ends with Capulet forcing Juliet to marry paris the next morning) as well as other scenes. One side shows the Montagues' house and this backdrop will act as the background of act one scene one where Romeo, his friends, family and the plot are all introduced. ...read more.


(From left to right) The red dress has a brilliant, totally oriental, collar and the colour scheme is very striking. The black dress is that of an average Chinese citizen. In contrast to the red dress, it has large sleeves, almost like something a wizard would wear. The belt around the waist is very tight and the colour scheme is not as rich as the female dress. The final picture continues the concept of males having plainer designs than females. The large sleeves are also evident as is the belt. An interesting feature in the woman's dress is that it has a short protruding 'tail'. On the next page is one of the newspaper pictures I collected. The design on the collar and the way it comes off onto the sides is very nice though I am not too sure of the colour scheme used (red and green?). This is the first time I have seen a sleeveless Chinese design. The Montagues & Mercutio To show that this family is English but living in China I decided to mix the Chinese and English designs and to do that I had to take pictures of both types of designs as part of my research. Mercutio is a friend of Romeo's but is Chinese so he would also fall under this category and have similar designs to the Montagues. (Top to bottom, left to right) The blue sailor outfit is a typical English design and has features that I would like to use when making the costumes for Montague such as the large collar that comes down and an average fitting style (not too tight, not too loose). The second picture represents the kind of suits the rich in the 16th century would put on. The tight fitting and raised collar are features that I intend to use. The coat has a small tail and is quite long in length compared to the previous clothing. ...read more.


All the designs are very ornate and heavy - something which is evident with the other two images as well. The middle image shows two family members or closely related characters because the style of make-up is very similar. The final picture shows the huge amount of white base that is used. The difference between it and the colour of the neck is vast. Capulet will have white make-up because he is a deceitful character as the audience will find out during act three. He will also have blue shading as he is pitiless and livid at Juliet when he finds out she does not want to marry Paris and bursts out at the nurse for not controlling her. Another way of showing the audience the qualities of a character is by applying symbols to their foreheads. Capulet will have an arrow pointing upwards to show he is angry and frustrated. Lady Capulet will have a fainter shade of the make-up Capulet has because even though she shows the same behaviour towards Juliet it is not as vicious as how her father treats her. Juliet and Tybalt will have the red and white combination because I want the audience to make their own mind up on these characters (because they create mixed opinions whereas Capulet and his wife are easy to evaluate). Mercutio will have yellow make-up because when he dies, most of the audience then perceive him as a martyr and only look at his positive qualities. Sound I have decided not to use any sound in this play because I think the build-up of tension that occurs steadily throughout the whole play is lost if any artificial sounds are played. The play has a genre of tragedy and I feel that the deaths of the lovers will not be seen in such a grievous/dreadful manner by the audience if any sound is playing in the background because, from personal experience, it somehow loses the emphasis. Lighting ?? ?? ?? ?? Muhammad Usama Imran Drama Coursework: Unit 1: Summative Task Candidate No. 0374 Centre No. 14737 Page | 4 ...read more.

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