NET/TEN Shareback: Single Carrot Theatre & Dance Exchange - GoaT, One-to-Ten, and Critical Response Process

2012-13 Exchange Grant Recipient

Single Carrot Theatre (Baltimore, MD) and Dance Exchange (Takoma Park, MD) shared best practices, approaches, and methodologies pertaining to creating performances in their respective fields of theatre and dance.

SHAREBACK SUMMARY:

Single Carrot Theatre and Dance Exchange provided NET with blog entries from Single Carrot Theatre Interim Artistic Director Kellie Mecleary and Dance Exchange Resident Artist Matthew Cumbie, as well as three of the methods shared during the course of the exchange: SCT’s Goals and Tactics (“GoaT”) and DX’s One-to-Ten and Critical Response Process. Their Shareback also includes photos taken at public events at SCT and DX home studios.

BLOG POSTS:

Blog Post by Single Carrot Theatre Interim Artistic Director Kellie Mecleary

Blog Post by Dance Exchange Resident Artist Matthew Cumbie

METHODOLOGY:

1. Goals and Tactics (Single Carrot Theatre)

At Single Carrot, we rely heavily on some fundamental acting techniques that we call GoaT, which stands for “Goals and Tactics.” What this means is, when you’re acting in a scene with a scene partner, you have a goal: there is something you want to do to or get from them. You use your lines, your words to try to get that thing. The different ways you use your words to achieve your goal are your tactics. This is something we as human beings do all the time. We use our words to get things from one another.  I’m doing it right now – I’m speaking in a certain kind of way to get you to understand and hear me. Perhaps also to get you to respect me. I could use the exact same words I’m using now to get you to fear me, or adore me, to make you wanna…hold my hand, etc. In some ways, it really doesn’t matter what we say – just how we say it. Or to make it more active: what we do with what we say.

I’m going to give you guys the opportunity to experiment with goals and tactics a bit, with your partner. Your script, you already know: it’s 1-10. Decide with you partner who is person A and who is person B. Person A will perform the odd numbers, and person B will perform the even numbers, in chronological order.  Run through your script together once.

I am going to give you a situation and a relationship, and based on those given circumstances, you are going to use the words in your script to try to get what you want from your partner.

1. Situation/relationship 1: you have reason to believe that your acting partner may be planning to murder you and that he or she may have a concealed weapon.

a. Take a moment. Silently decide what your goal is – what do you want to do to/get from your partner. It could be as simple as “I want to convince my partner not to kill me.” it could be something else.
b. Perform the scene.
c. Any brave couple want to volunteer to perform your scene for the group?
d. Shiny moments/observations from the group?

2. Situation/relationship 2: you were separated from a beloved sibling when you were three years old, and you have reason to believe that your acting partner is that sibling.

a. Take a moment. Silently decide what your goal is – what do you want to do to/get from your partner.
b. Perform the scene.
c. Any brave couple want to volunteer to perform your scene for the group?
d. Shiny moments/observations from the group?

3. Situation/relationship 3: Person A has reason to believe your acting partner may be planning to murder you and may have a concealed weapon, and Person B has reason to believe your acting partner is your beloved, long lost sibling.

a. Take a moment. Silently decide what your goal is – what do you want to do to/get from your partner. Now, you have each performed this relationship before, but now your acting partner has a very different relationship in mind and will be responding to you in very different ways. Be open to what your partner gives you. Be in the moment. allow your tactics to change in response to how they behave. 
b. Perform the scene.
c. Any brave couple want to volunteer to perform your scene for the group?
d. Shiny moments/observations from the group?

4. If time, switch so Person A thinks person B is her long lost sibling, and Person B thinks person a is going to try to kill her.

2. One to Ten (Dance Exchange)

One to Ten can get a room full of people moving together and experimenting with shapes, range, and basic partnering. It works with experienced movers,  people unaccustomed to structured dance experiences, first-time dancers and groups that combine both types.

ACTIVITY

Step 1. Trading Shapes: Ask participants to form pairs. Direct the group through the following activities:

• The first partner makes a shape with his body, then holds perfectly still and says, “One.”
• The second partner looks at the first partner’s shape and then makes a shape that relates to it in some way. She freezes and says, “Two.”
• This process continues between the partners until they reach ten.

In introducing One to Ten, you can demonstrate with a partner and model use of limbs, head, and trunk, show options for levels (positions high or low in space), and show various ways to explore creating a position “in relation to” the partner. Options include: 1) copying the first shape exactly or partially; and 2) fitting into or around the first partner’s shape.

Arriving at ten, the partners have completed their dance. At this point they may stop to talk about what they observed in making the dance.

Step 2. Variations:  Now, with participants remaining in the same pairs, repeat the activity a few times, each time introducing a new variation that encourages dancers to experiment in particular ways:

• Vary the distance between yourselves, being at times close and at others distant.
• Create transitions between the still shapes. Try jumping, rolling, gliding and turning while on your way to the next shape.
• When you freeze in your still position, don’t say the number out loud. Just let your partner observe that it’s their time to move.

Step 3. Show and Observe: After participants have practiced these ideas, divide the group in two. Have one half do a round of One to Ten while the other half watches, followed by a discussion of the instant dance, prompted by such questions as: What did you observe? What moments were interesting? How did the dancers create exciting movement and shapes? What do you notice when you see several pairs doing the exercise together?

CLICK HERE FOR APPLICATIONS AND FOOTNOTES

3. Critical Response Process (Dance Exchange)

Liz Lerman’s Critical Response Process is a widely-recognized method that nurtures the development of artistic works-in-progress through a four-step, facilitated dialogue between artists, peers, and audiences. In use for over 20 years, the Process has been embraced by artmakers, educators, and administrators at theater companies, dance departments, orchestras, museums and more. 

CLICK HERE TO READ ABOUT THE ROLES, PROCESS, AND CORE STEPS

CONTACT INFORMATION:

Single Carrot Theatre
2600 N. Howard Street
Baltimore, MD 21218
www.singlecarrot.com

Phone: 443.844.9253
Email: info@singlecarrot.com

Twitter: @SingleCarrot
Instagram: @SingleCarrot
Facebook: www.facebook.com/SingleCarrotTheatre

Posted by: 
Monday, August 11, 2014

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