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Acting:  Week 15
(May 8-12, 2023)

Important topics/terms/instructions are in RED.

Google Classroom assignments are in BLUE.

Ms. Price provides ALL learning for absent students in a self-directed format.

If absent, read & understand/complete each of the day's activities below.  You are EXPECTED to do so BEFORE returning to class.


Day 1Review of beats / Showing a scene's opening beat

1.) Reviewed:  You can't start blocking a scene without what?  (analyzing scene/characters & set)

2.) Wrote your chosen character verbs (from pg 5 of your Scene Booklet) in your script IN PENCIL.  Write your verbs right after the line in your script.  (If absent, be sure to do this on your own.)

3.) Ms. Price passed back your initial practice (in-class learning activities) of:  Verbs / Beats (in To Gillian).  Grades were given for level of understanding (verbs) and also participation in the learning (beats).

4.) Read & analyzed a scene from the play, Proof.

Background of Story:  Two adult sisters have just lost their father, a once a brilliant mathematician (genius) who suffered from mental illness in his final years.  The younger sister (Catherine) cared for her father prior to his death, and also shares his genius.  But she worries that she may turn "crazy" like he did in the end.  

In this scene: Catherine's older sister (Claire) has come to take a depressed and disconnected Catherine  back with her to New York.  

5.) Participated in guided practice of marking & naming beats in Proof.

6.) Learned about opening beats.  (The non-verbal information you give an audience about your scene BEFORE characters begin to speak lines. This could include your established setting, your character's posture, your character's stage business, etc.)

7.) Experimented (as a class) with the opening beat in the scene from Proof using stage business and characterization to convey meaning and character. (Ms. Price directed volunteers in a scene study).

8.) Made choices with your scene partner about the opening beat of YOUR scene.  


Day 2:  Naming Beats / Showing Wants

1.) Reviewed:  actable verbs, "naming" beats, opening beats

2.) Completed pg 6 in your Scene Booklets, which included marking/naming beats in your own scenes.

3.)  Participated  (with scene partner) in analyzing the beats/opening beat of YOUR scene.

  1.  Made choices for your scene's opening beat.  Write about your choices on the bottom of  page 6 of your scene booklet.  (What ways can you SHOW the relationship BEFORE speaking lines in the scene?)

  2. Worked with your partner to name each beat in your scene.  ("the ___________") and marked your choices vertically for each beat on your script.   (Follow the guidance/directions on page 6 of your scene booklet.)

Use the following guiding questions when marking/naming :

  • What's really going on in this chunk of action (in the relationship - not just for one character)

  • When does that "shift", change, or something "new" begins? (draw a line)

  • (when done with the above)  Naming Beats:  If you were to give a "chapter title" to this chunk of action, what might it be?  (The ___________________________).  Remember to focus on the relationship/subtext, not just one character's lines/actions.

If absent, be sure to complete each of the above items with your scene partner.

4.) Ms. Price introduced the "Directed Scene Study Reflection" (if you participate in a scene study in class, you must complete a Reflection after your experience - EVERYONE will be required to participate in a Scene Study eventually.  This Reflection can be found in Google Classroom

5.) Reviewed W's:  

  • What's going on? (on surface and beneath the surface)

  • Why is this scene happening (what's parts of the relationship are important to show?) 

  • Wants:  What does my character want to do to the other character with these words?

6.) Watched a video and took notes:  Wants (see Google Classroom Class Notes)  If absent, be sure to complete.

Day 3:  Blocking Pattern



1.) Received Final Scene Project Task Sheet & Rubrics (Rubric 1 & Rubric 2)​.  Remember,  you're graded on your KNOWLEDGE and UNDERSTANDING as well as your acting.  Concepts learned and practiced in class are to be applied to YOUR scene - so be sure you participate in class learning so it's easier to apply the concepts to YOUR scene.

2.) Finished a video and took notes:  Wants (see Google Classroom Class Notes)

3.) Students tried verbing 3 more character lines (and corrected any "weak" verbs in their scenes) based on the instruction in the video.

  • Remember:

    • No emotion words (to feel sad, etc.)​

    • No passive/be verbs (to be upset)

    • No verbs that stay in an actor's head (to wonder, to contemplate, to analyze, etc.)

    • No verbs that stay in an actor's words (to question, to inform, etc.)

    • Be sure you're asking "What is my character trying to do TO the other character with these words?"  (This keeps the focus on the relationship, which is always the most interesting part of any scene.)

4.)  Discussed:  What Next?  

      Answer:  Blocking!

  • Blocking is the coordinated movement in a scene.  Blocking choices should show both the scene's subtext and the character's intentions/relationship.

5.) Learned a method for determining a scene's overall blocking pattern by physicalizing each "beat change" in the scene to show the progression (build) of the scene.  Ms. Price did a guided rehearsal to help students translate their beat choices into a blocking pattern.

Day 4:  Blocking Pattern

1.)  Reviewed how to create strong intentions (verbs) for your characters in your scene (strong vs. weak verbs, etc.)

2.) Watched & Discussed a video:  Stanislavski's method of physical actions

 If absent  be sure to watch!


3.) Reviewed how to use beats to see the progression & build of the scene, and how to create a blocking pattern for your scene.  Ms. Price taught these concepts live with her class - however, if you were ABSENT, watch Scoring a Scene (Scene Analysis)  (7:15)

4.)  Reviewed blocking (a scene's coordinated movement) and how you must show BUILD in your scene's blocking (start with your scene's blocking pattern BEFORE you move to detailed/character blocking).

5.) Read a new scene from the play,  1984

A brief synopsis of the play, 1984:

In a future (dystopian) society, where everything (including thoughts) are controlled by the all-powerful government ("the Party"), and every action is watched on camera and scrutinized by "Big Brother", Winston fiercely holds on to his individuality despite the mental re-programming (torture) he must endure.  (If interested, watch trailer HERE.)

In this scene:

Winston, in this scene, has been imprisoned & tortured repeatedly by a Party leader (O'Brien), but despite all that, Winston seeks to remain strong.

6.) Determined the climax of the scene from  1984 and marked that moment with a star.  (Partners worked together to discuss, analyze, and mark the climax of the scene.)

7.) Participated as a class in a scene study (with volunteers) show the possible set, beats, and build (& climax) in 1984.

8.) Completed (with your partner) the following for your OWN final scene:

  1. Determine the climax of your scene.  (Complete page 7 in your scene booklet.)

  2. Review your scene's blocking pattern.

  3. TRY some detailed blocking.  (Complete page 9 in your scene booklet.) 

If absent, be sure to complete each of the above items with your scene partner.


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