Scripted Performance Evaluation - Shakers

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Scripted Performance Evaluation


Performed on 24/03/03

Katie Heskins 8100

        The play that I decided to perform for my GCSE Drama coursework scripted piece was entitled ‘Shakers’ and it was written by John Godber and Jane Thornton. Written for four female actors, the play explores the issues surrounding life in a male-dominated world during the 1980’s when unemployment had never been higher. The play, which is set in a cocktail bar, has 24 scenes in total. For our assessment, we decided to perform ten scenes: 1-8, 10 and 23. During the play, the four waitresses, Carol (the character I played), Adele, Nicki and Mel, switch from role to role, playing the many characters that come into Shakers.

        The play’s strongest scene that we performed was one in which two of the waitresses were playing males - ‘dressed up, and out for a good time’. The two men mock the stereotypes that there are of males by addressing rude comments to their waitress and calling her ‘lovey’. I think we made this scene so effective because we attempted making these characters so outrageously crude that we created humour for the audience in doing so. We purposely made our voices deep, our words quite slurred and our actions very sloppy. Dressed in baggy sports clothes, we both sat in typical ‘male’ positions. I was sat with the chair back in front of me and my legs either side of it and the other waitress was sat with her legs apart, pretending to flex her muscles. These stereotypical movements and characteristics helped convey the idea that we were deliberately making fun of the assumptions that there are of typical men.

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        The most effective scene for the performers was the first scene in which we address the majority of our comments to the audience – this scene ends with the ‘Shakers motif’. This abstract piece of theatre was effective because we use mime and theatrical poses to show how supposedly happy the Shakers girls were meant to be. Because this scene was the first scene, we spent a lot of time improving it and I think it came across in performance because we were word perfect and there was no improvisation in the action – everyone knew where everyone else – ...

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