21 June 2012
We are competitive. Each week so far we’ve started with games. This is fun but also terrifying: One girl slid across the room on her knees in a bid to win!
This week we looked at what makes dramatic action: the behavioural tactics a character uses to what they want. So, the point of the games this week was to understand what makes good drama: tactics! Well the tactics used in order to win and beat the high stakes of the wants and actions in the story. They don’t just throw this stuff together you know!
We went on to write a short scene where two characters, who have a history – at a place, at some point in a day that the writer decides- both wanting the same thing. We then highlighted 4 tactics (manipulate, bluff, intimidate, cajole, belittle, flatter, coerce, etc) that each had to use to get their way. I found this extremely hard work!
The stakes just weren’t high enough. << lesson learnt right there!
We alos had a look at a scene from truth and reconciliation by debbie tucker green, looking at the objectives and obstacles for the characters.
Homework: analyse tactics in ‘truth and reconciliation’; develop a 10 minute scene either on the first tactics scene or create a new one; read ‘The Pillowman’.
A course mentor suggested that perhaps the reason that East Asian playwrights aren’t getting a look in might just be because they’re just not good enough. East Asian playwrights need to be putting out work that is just too great to ignore. There is of course that reason, but could it be that good East Asian writers exist but they don’t know if their stories are interesting? On my degree, there was a course on Post-Colonial theatre texts. I was interested in taking it but having read through the set texts list, I realised that the only Asian texts represented were the Southern ones.
Thing is, does it have to be about East Asians? The feminist theatrical movement very much dealt with feminist issues initially but in a recent interview in the Telegraph, the next generation suggested that they were less bound by the need to solve these issues and could look at playwriting in the same way as their male counterparts.
So what is the future for East Asian playwrights? I guess we will find out.