CGSE ENG 4202
2ème Année Management,2ème Année Télécom
The objectives of the course are :
- to be able to communicate ideas, experiences and opinions in good (clear and efficient) English
- to talk fluently on any given topic and to improvise on a situation at a moment’s notice
- to be able to analyse the gist of any written document or oral performance and to express one’s ideas in an essay
- to stand in front of an audience with less apprehension and to perform for about ten minutes
- to get a group to listen to you and to understand you
- to acquire the skills to exploit the latent creative ability in the language
The course introduces students to different basic drama exercises such as warming-up, trust-building or concentration games. The course will then go on to present various improvisation games to promote quick reactivity and spontaneity. Then students will choose, study and perform different theatre and cinema scenes (Harold Pinter, Quentin Tarantino, Monty Python, Woody Allen, Clint Eastwood…). Students will then develop a trained eye by watching carefully and analysing the performance of others.
The purpose of the course is to consider learning English not as an end in itself but as a means for students to express themselves in a meaningful context, which is what acting offers. By taking risks using the language and having to adapt to people and situations, students should be able to overcome any possible “language blocks”.
In the words of Alan Maley and Alan Duff in Drama techniques in language learning, students will be encouraged to “use the skills we most need when speaking a language : adaptability, speed of reaction, sensitivity to tone, in one word appropriateness.”
By the end of the course, students should be able to understand how a scene comes to life on stage, to perform in front of other students and to appraise the scenes acted out in front of them.
Students should expect a high degree of interaction. I expect active participation, discussion about what has been done as I consider the discussion after or before the work as important as the work itself in terms of language learning. In order to build a warm, pleasant and stimulating atmosphere I expect students to keep themselves and their mobile phones quiet during performances. I also insist that all scenes are learnt very early on so as to facilitate the acting process.
Grading will be on a scale of 0 to 20.
You will be graded on your participation in class (and presence at all class periods) and on several writing tasks : 60% of overall grade.
The final exam will be the presentation of the scenes : 40% of overall grade.
Programme grande école
A typical class is divided into two parts :
Part 1 : Various drama exercises and improvisations
Part 2 : Students choose a scene to work on and perform at the end of the semester. They will also help direct another group’s work.
Thus, each student will be an actor as well as a director.
Class progression will be as follows :
- Introduction to acting and improvising.
- Warm-up exercises : voice, breathing, concentration…
- Improvisation exercises and techniques : spontaneity, quick reactivity
- Understanding the scene, the dramatic stakes and tension, the relationship between the characters, their feelings…
- Analysing the humour and how to produce it.
- Work on rythm, body language…
- Directing : what to look out for, to consider, to correct, how to help the actors when they are stuck…
- Reinventing and finding new ideas after several rehearsals.
- Getting ready for the final performance.
*please note that this syllabus is tentative and subject to change